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A Culinary Adventure in Bali: 10 Must-Try Popular Dishes

9 July 2024 21:47 WIB

TEMPO.CO, JakartaBali's allure goes beyond its breathtaking landscapes. The island boasts a vibrant culinary scene filled with dishes that tantalize the taste buds and reflect the rich local culture. From fiery Ayam Betutu to the delightful simplicity of Nasi Jinggo, Balinese cuisine offers a unique experience for every palate.

Whether you are seeking halal options or adventurous flavors, Bali has something to offer everyone.

Here are the 10 most popular dishes in Bali:

1. Ayam Betutu

Ayam Betutu, a local favorite, features tender chicken marinated in a complex blend of Balinese spices, then slow-roasted in banana leaves over a smoky rice husk fire, resulting in incredibly tender meat bursting with flavor. Ayam Betutu Men Tempeh, Warung Liku, or Ayam Betutu Khas Gilimanuk are recommended places for an authentic experience.

2. Nasi Ayam Kedewatan

Nasi Ayam Kedewatan is a rising star on the island's culinary scene. This dish is a rice platter overflowing with an assortment of delectable offerings: ayam betutu, garang asem (spicy and sour fish dish), shredded chicken, chicken sate lilit (minced and skewered meat), pepes ayam urap, liver and gizzard saute, fried peanuts, green beans, and pindang eggs (marinated eggs). Nasi Ayam Kedewatan Bu Mangku is a renowned spot to savor this culinary masterpiece.

3. Bebek Bengil

Ubud's signature dish, Bebek Bengil, translates to "dirty duck" for its brown color and sprinkled with spices. This dish features duck marinated in a secret blend of local spices for a full 12 hours, resulting in incredibly flavorful and tender meat. It has a crispy exterior and melt-in-your-mouth texture and even the bones can be eaten.

4. Lawar

Lawar, a traditional Balinese dish, offers a unique flavor profile with minced chicken, duck, or pork meticulously combined with vegetables, coconut, and a distinct blend of spices. It is often served as part of nasi campur (mixed rice) or nasi ayam (rice with chicken) dishes.

5. Nasi Jinggo

Nasi Jinggo, also known as Nasi Jenggo, is the Balinese equivalent of Javanese "nasi kucing". These small, convenient packets of rice come with various side dishes like shredded chicken, fried noodles, meat, fish, or eggs. The choice of rice can be white or yellow, offering a quick and delicious bite.

6. Jimbaran Seafood

A trip to Jimbaran would not be complete without indulging in a seafood feast. Head to the beach and take your pick from the many restaurants offering fresh seafood grilled to perfection with a stunning sunset backdrop.

7. Sate Lilit

These skewers are a must-try for meat lovers. It is made of minced chicken or pork marinated in fragrant spices, wrapped around lemongrass or bamboo skewers, and grilled to perfection.

8. Nasi Campur (Mixed Rice)

Balinese mixed rice is the most popular dish among tourists on the island. Fluffy rice serves as the base for an assortment of side dishes like lawar, shredded meat, and sate lilit, with options for pork or chicken mixed rice. Nasi Pedas Bu Andika, Nasi Pedas as Bu Hanif, Nasi Ayam Bu Oki, and Warung Men Weti are all popular choices.

9. Babi Guling (Suckling Pig)

As the name suggests, this dish features roasted suckling pig marinated in traditional local spices. A single serving typically includes rice, offal, lawar, chili sauce, a special "super tasty sauce," and the star of the show: crispy pork skin. Recommended spots to try suckling pigs include Babi Guling Pak Malen, Babi Guling Ibu Oka, and Babi Guling Pak Dobiel. 

10. Pork Satay

Balinese pork satay is savory, sweet, and spicy, typically served with peanut sauce or a spicy soy sauce dip, and perfect for sharing. Sate Babi Bawah Pohon, Sate Plecing Arjuna, and Sate Babi Bu Nyoman are all great places to try this flavorful skewered treat.

ANGGITA VIANDHINI NUGROHO PUTRI 

Editor's Choice: 5 More Lesser-Known Sightseeing Spots in Bali

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