…And The Topic Swiftly Turned to Food…

This morning I booked a return flight back to Indonesia, for September.  My ’30th birthday present to myself’, I really wanted to go somewhere special to mark a milestone birthday this year, and it was only ever going to be Indonesia.

The country is my spiritual home, where the journey started five years ago, and every now and then when I feel that the spiritual vaccine I received back then may be beginning to wear off – filed away by the emery board of the largely superficial and impatient mainstream Western culture – I know that to go back for a booster jab would probably be wise.

Indonesia, you and I have a lot to catch up on. I’m excited to spend some quality time in your Equatorial heat with some of my favourite natives of yours again, and almost just as importantly, to indulge in some of your finest snacks that we simply don’t have over here….

…like cimol-cimol, those squishy, doughy, balls that are coated in a spicy cheesy powder and come served in polythene bags which you purchase from a street vendor… cimol cimol

…and Fanta-SuSu – the drink that happily attacks the arteries but is too tasty for us to care – strawberry-flavoured Fanta (WHY aren’t you in the UK yet!) poured over a thick bed of sweet condensed milk…

fantasusu

…speaking of Fanta-SuSu…. it’s probably best consumed when juxtaposed with a beach-barbequed corn on the cob that has first been rolled around in some chilli-powder before being placed on the grill…

Donation Day 007

…and speaking of beaches, what about ‘Es Buah Rumput Laut’…a name which translates exactly as ‘Ice Fruit Seaweed’… so called because this sweet, milky, icy dessert is full of pieces of fruity gelatin pieces – some of which resemble bits of seaweed in appearance….an acquired taste, but an interesting one…

rumput laut

There’s also the pandan cake, a favourite at Indonesian birthday and wedding parties.  It looks just like a regular sponge, and for the most part, it is.  Except for the crucial difference that it’s BRIGHT GREEN.  Made using the leaves of the pandan – a tropical plant popular in South Asia – pandan cake is similar in flavour to coconut, with a few hints of citrus as well.  And because the cake is naturally green, it’s healthy right?!

pandancake

…and last but not least, my absolute favourite, the ultimate, martabak manis … a description of which could never do it justice, but I’ll try… greasy, sponge-y, cheesy, chocolate-y, nutty, sweetcorn-y BEAUTY… even though it may sound anything but… trust me on this…

martabakmanis And these are just a few. I’m pretty sure that what with globalisation and all that jazz, any – if not all – of the items listed above will one day be available here in the UK, similar to how the likes of sushi, beef jerky and sweet-chilli dipping sauce have migrated in recent years to populate the aisles of M&S.

Well, I certainly hope so.

It’s a long way to go for a bit of cimol-cimol otherwise….

Song of the Day:  The Electro Swingers – Victorian Dream

Reasons to love electro swing #4291.  Happy and amusing music.

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