Someone has rightly said that one of the best ways to explore a country’s culture and tradition is by enjoying the food. Nothing can beat the flavor of local cuisine brimming with the aroma of the freshest produce from the local market. If you are planning to visit Indonesia, take part in a culinary adventure and try out the iconic Indonesian cuisine that has something for everyone!
This is a mouthwatering specialty served in West Sumatran. It consists of thick and meaty beef slices cooked for several hours in aromatic spices and coconut milk. What you get is juicy and tender beef that pairs beautifully with steaming rice.
There are numerous variations of satay available in Indonesia and the variations are based on the type of meat or sauce used. Traditionally, the dish is prepared by marinating chunks of beef, chicken, pork, or mutton with spices and seasonings. The meat skewers are served with spicy peanut chili sauce.
Nasi Goreng (Fried Rice)
Photo credit: Toto Camba (https://www.flickr.com/photos/to2camba/)
Indonesia’s own fried rice or Nasi Goreng has gained popularity around the world, and when you are in the country, you can’t miss the authentic versions! This wholesome food includes white steamed rice with various ingredients such as onion, meat (chicken, lamb, pork, or beef), green peas, cabbages, scrambled eggs, mushrooms, and cucumber slices to garnish.
Photo credit: Demuths Cookery School (https://www.flickr.com/photos/vegcs/)
If you are watching your weight, eat something light and delicious like the local food called Gado Gado. This is an Indonesian vegetable salad that comprises of bitter melon, cabbage, and chayote. The vegetables may be steamed or blanched. They may be served with tempeh, fried tofu, ketupat rice cakes, or lontong. The sweet and spicy peanut sauce dressing further enhances the overall flavor.
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If you are a chicken lover, you are sure to love this one. This Indonesian cuisine includes flattened chicken breast or drumstick, deep-fried to perfection. The biggest selling point of this dish is the sambal chili sauce, which adds a hot flavor to the food. It is served with steaming rice, fried beans curd, pickled vegetable, and tempeh.
This is Indonesian’s own instant noodles and packs like a powerful snack when your stomach growls at odd hours. The options and variations are endless but what we like best is that this is a quick snack you can enjoy while sightseeing or just before hopping into a theatre.
If you wish to feel Indonesian tradition and culture closely, live like a local and feast on the delicious street food. You will notice that Indonesians love peanut sauce and it finds its place in almost every delicacy, also in Siomay. This dish is inspired by dim sum and contains steamed fish dumplings served along with steamed cabbage, potato, eggs, and peanut sauce.
This is a delicious soup with Oxtail as the main ingredient. Some people believe the oxtail soup was invented in London in the 17th century, but the Indonesian version is popular around the world. The oxtail is either barbecued or fried, and it is combined with a yummy soup base.
This is yet another popular Indonesian cuisine known for its unique aroma and flavor. It comprises of white rice cooked in coconut milk. The dish is served with fried chicken, shredded omelet, tempe (soybean cake), anchovies, fried onion, and topped with sambal. Try this at lunch and your tastebuds will thank you!
Photo credit: Agus Fanani (https://www.flickr.com/photos/80494226@N00/)
No meal is complete unless you order some sweet dish and the Martabak is the most popular Indonesian dessert. This dish is only available after sunset. Mix it up with chocolate fillings, peanuts, and cheese for a wholesome dessert after your dinner.
Every good thing comes to an end and only memories remain. The food you eat during your holiday is as important as the sights you see and the experiences you take home with you. Savor local Indonesian cuisine during your trip to the country, and the flavors will stay etched in your mind forever.