Food in Indonesia

This thread is intended as a close up and personal look at food in Indonesia, all based on things you've personally experienced, and delivered with photographs and/or videos taken by yourself.

Anyone can google, but I'm trying to create a thread about actual experiences, giving a personal touch beyond anything google can offer.

It should be Indonesian food you eat/have eaten in the past, food available to anyone (so home cooking is out), and anything from the internet is of no use because anyone can google that so it isn't personal.
Other foods available in Indonesia are fine, even a post about Mcd's as many potential expats will probably be interested in the range available, not just the local food.

Chit chat and cut and paste along with comment here

General stuff first....

Tricks to remember:

Buy street food 'dibunkus' (Wrapped up).
A lot of the problems aren't with street food but the way they wash the dishes. They use dirty water, I've even seen them washing in a drain.
If you get it wrapped and take your own plastic knife, fork and spoon, far safer.

These use a bucket and water, not great because it's still water, not running.

These wash in a bucket, but next to a drain with who knows what flowing in it.

See if they freshly cook BEFORE you buy. Food left out for a long time can be a problem.
Hot oil destroys any bacteria so you're pretty much safe.

Rancid smell means their oil has a high PV. This is usually down to overuse.
In turn, that means they're saving money where they shouldn't so you may be buying poor quality stuff.

Now we're past the basics, time for photos and videos...............................

I made this video a long time ago so some of the photos are from an old Nokia smartphone, but it tells a story.

Chicken porridge (Bubur ayam) is a very popular breakfast here.
(My Indonesian was terrible then - oops)

Sate ayam is BBQ chicken on little sticks.
Various other meats are used, including beef and horse, but the latter is less common.

Sate comes in many forms, but chicken tends to be the most popular. That doesn't mean Indonesians won't make sate out of a lot of other things.

As is normal all over the world, the quality varies a lot, but the one in the last four pictures was very nice.

Fried rice is extremely popular in Indonesia, so there are endless street stands selling it.

Other fried rice stands,

Fried noodles are also extremely popular here, usually being sold by the same people who sell fried rice.

Bakso is something I never eat, or at least stopped eating when I saw the "meat" balls being made.
Basically, they were anything but meat.
This food stand is exceptionally clean, the lady washing her hands several times whilst I was there.

Sausages are very much a western food, but many Indonesians have taken to them.

Rujak is fruit served with chilli, lots of chilli.
It's wonderful stuff, strongly recommended by me.

Dominos pizza is popular, and they sing.
They also have a very good delivery service in many areas.

I've just finished this video of a type of noodle soup being made.
I saw him on my way home one evening a few weeks ago, so I hung around to see how he made it. …

Martabak is very common here, and delicious.
It comes in various types, egg only, egg with things like chicken, and various sweet versions.
The two egg version is easily enough for one greedy person or two normal people.
The guy can't really move as fast as you see; I increased the speed in places to save the video being too long.
(I ate the product you see being made in the video, and it was lovely) …

Gorengan, or fried things, can be found all over Indonesia.
They all share being deep fried in batter, but the contents vary wildly from tofu to bananas and pretty much anything else you can think of. …

Moving on to veggie.
Most areas have veggie sellers wandering the street either by motorbike or Kaki lima (Hand cart).
Fresh veggie is available by walking out of your front door, but you'll pay very slightly higher prices than in a market.

The whitish blocks at the end of the video are tempe, a fermented product used as a meat substitute by many. It costs around Rp5,000 per block and can be used in a wide variety of ways, my favourites being thin cut and fried, then served in a sauce, or thin cut and battered, deep fried until crispy, then served as a snack.
Here's a trick, add herbs, flavours or spices to the batter to vary the taste.

Take a look at the carts. …

Sambal is chilli mixed with whatever to create food that bites back.
It's available in supermarkets as sauces or as an Indonesian style sambal, or available as street food.

Those weak of stomach should be a little careful with this as the heat ranges from "That was a bit spicy" to "OMG, pass me 3 litres of coca cola - quick, and get a toilet roll in the fridge".

Street restaurants specialising in sambal are common. …

My favourite place for sambal is SS restaurants.
They have a chain of places, but my first visit was in Magelang, Central Java.
Love at first mouthful.

What I suggest this place is fantastic, I mean it's supercalifragilisticexpialidocious.

You buy the chilli first, then decide the side dishes you want to eat it with. It's cheap and delicious.

Many shopping centres have food courts with a wide variety of what many consider junk food, but we also have to admit it's delicious.
One of my favourites is Doner kebab. Seriously, I don't often get the chance to buy one but I leave the big places alone if I know there is one around.

If they aren't to your taste, there's a wide variety of other stuff available or you can dine at one of the many 'sit down' restaurants in the malls.

Bread is surprisingly popular here, so it's sold in all supermarkets, most mini markets and by many street street sellers who run about in/on everything from a pushbike to a van.

Kelapa muda (Young coconut) is a popular drink here, and mostly profit for many as the vendors just harvest wild coconuts for free.

Here's how they prepare it (Watch your fingers) …

Seafood is quite common in Indonesia, but there are restaurants every couple of hundred meters as you go down the roads near holiday resorts.
They vary wildly in quality, but I have yet to visit any that were better than 'acceptable'. Some are brick buildings but many are bamboo structures. The food is usually cooked to order so is generally fresh.
This one in in Anyer, and could be said to be pretty typical of the sort of thing you'll find there.

How about shellfish Fred?  I am always very, very cautious when it comes to shellfish, but I love it so much!

Ubudian :

How about shellfish Fred?  I am always very, very cautious when it comes to shellfish, but I love it so much!

Restaurants like the one above have an easily available supply of fresh product so there is little chance of food poisoning unless the people are dirty or the preparation is poor.
I can't say the same for small places away from the coasts or the really low quality ones.

Gorengan (Fried snacks) and sold all over Indonesia in shops and little street stands.
Content varies, but many are vegetarian as meat is commonly too expensive to buy for people such as this chap.

There are many tiny restaurants that aren't much more than shacks or very small shops, but they specialise in one type of food.
I found one a short while ago that did sweet courses only ... and it was very nice.
This is caramelised banana served with ice cream - my second portion because it was amazing.

Living world is a shopping mall to the north of BSD in Alam Sutera.
Nice place with an Ace hardware and a bunch of other good shops .... and a wide variety of food.
The food court upstairs hasn't done all that well, but one place has survived and thrives.

The result is this, one of the best satay dishes I've tried, all nice clean chicken breast with no fat or gristle.

The cooking goes like this. You'll notice the place is nice and clean, and the staff are very good. I strongly suggest trying it if you happen to be there. …

Food in Indonesia is many and varied, and places have their own versions of Indonesian stuff.
Wonosobo has tempe kemul, a thinner and crispier version of mendowan.
Tempe is a fermented product that is commonly fried in batter.

The top sign claims their chilli is so hot it will make you cry.

Looks good

tasted good

You'll note the money next to the plate, Rp11,000, or about a quid and a half. Very good value for money, but I didn't cry.

Most butchers are aimed at the Muslim population as that's the vast majority of their trade but supermarkets commonly split into 'normal' meat counters and non halal, the latter having pork products.
This excellent supermarket in Aeon mall is a fine example of how it works.

Street food sometimes get a reputation for giving you a dodgy stomach, and that reputation is sometimes deserved.
Much of the time is it's the food but the way they wash the dishes. This guy is washing them in a puddle of overflow from a drain - I hate to think what's in that bucket.
Much of the trick with buying street food is making sure you know where they wash up.

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