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Exploring the Unique Flavors of Bali: 5 Must-Try Balinese Dishes

Kamis, 20 Juli 2023 - 05:23 | 152.75k
The humble look of Nasi Djinggo Bali. (Photo: PurnomoPurmoon/Freepik)
The humble look of Nasi Djinggo Bali. (Photo: PurnomoPurmoon/Freepik)

TIMESINDONESIA, JAKARTA – Bali is known for its stunning landscapes, vibrant culture, and picturesque beaches, but one aspect of the island that shouldn't be overlooked is its incredible culinary scene. Bali offers a wide array of delicious and authentic Balinese dishes that will tantalize your taste buds.

Exploring the culinary delights of Bali is a delightful journey that takes you deeper into the island's rich cultural heritage. From the vibrant markets to the atmospheric local warungs (small eateries), Bali offers a plethora of opportunities to savor traditional Balinese dishes.

5 Must-try Balinese Dishes that will Give You a True Taste of this Paradise Island

1. Nasi Djinggo

Nasi Djinggo is a signature Balinese dish that features a plate of steamed rice accompanied by a variety of side dishes, including satay, Lawar, vegetables, tofu, tempeh, and various sambals. The combination of different flavors, textures, and ingredients on a single plate creates a harmonious and satisfying meal. This dishes allows you to sample the diverse flavors of Balinese cuisine in one enticing dish.

2. Sate Lilit

Sate Lilit is a unique Balinese dish consisting of minced meat (usually chicken, pork, or fish) mixed with grated coconut and a blend of spices, including shallots, garlic, lemongrass, and turmeric. The meat mixture is then wrapped around a skewer made of lemongrass or bamboo, giving it a distinct shape. Sate Lilit is grilled to perfection and served with steamed rice and a range of dipping sauces. The fragrant aroma and rich flavors of Sate Lilit make it an irresistible choice for any food enthusiast.

3. Ayam Betutu

Ayam Betutu is a Balinese specialty consisting of chicken marinated in a blend of spices including candlenuts, bird's eye chilies, ginger, galangal, and other aromatic herbs. The chicken is then wrapped in banana leaves and slow-cooked until tender. The result is succulent, flavorful chicken with a perfect balance of spices. Ayam Betutu is often served with steamed rice and accompanied by sambal matah, a traditional Balinese condiment made from shallots, chili, and lemongrass.

4. Babi Guling

Babi Guling, or suckling pig, is arguably Bali's most famous dish. The whole pig is marinated in a mixture of spices such as turmeric, coriander, lemongrass, and shallots, then roasted over an open fire until the skin becomes crispy while the meat remains juicy and tender. Babi Guling is typically served with steamed rice, lawar (a mixed vegetable dish), and sambal matah. This tantalizing dish is a must-try for meat lovers.

5. Lawar

Lawar is a traditional Balinese dish made from a mixture of vegetables, grated coconut, and minced meat or blood (optional). It is flavored with a combination of spices, such as shrimp paste, garlic, shallots, chili, and lime juice. There are two main types of Lawar in Bali, Lawar Merah (red lawar) and Lawar Putih (white lawar), each offering a unique flavor and texture. Lawar is often served as a side dish with other main courses such as Babi Guling or Ayam Betutu.

You could find these food from the local restaurants or street food vendors. Be sure to explore popular food destinations like Seminyak, Ubud, and Jimbaran, where you can find renowned restaurants and local warungs serving up authentic Balinese cuisine.

Bali is not only a visual paradise but also a culinary haven. By embarking on a gastronomic adventure and trying these five must-try Balinese dishes, you will gain a deeper appreciation for the island's unique flavors and cultural heritage. (*)

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