This meal of eating all together is called a Botram and it helps to kind of lean over so you can get a lot of food into your mouth. The flavors are just insane. Good morning everyone its David with my new Tourism Article in Jakarta, Indonesia. Today Ken and Gratia have invited Ying and I to go on a family trip with them to a place called Punchak. We are driving towards Bogor, which is about 30 minutes to an hour depending on traffic but this morning, traffic looks pretty light, so we should be there pretty soon. Made it to Bogor and we kind of drove through the city to the other side and we’re still in the city but it feels like countryside here and our first stop we are at a place that serves Laksa Bogor. Oh not noodle okay. Rice noodle. David Rice noodle okay. Man And it’s been fermented. So she puts rice, cakes in the bottom of the bowl and then a bunch of bean sprouts and then rice noodles and then after that. Also that’s the Laksa curry sauce. It looks very thick. That looks awesome. Oh I think I can smell some ginger and may be tumeric in there.
That steam smells amazing. I got my bowl of Laksa Bogor and there are actually rice cakes on the bottom plus the noodles and then she added in a bunch of bean sprouts and some vegetables and then she topped it with some other seasonings and then added in the curry sauce and then on the top is some shredded coconut, which has been, it’s been cooked, stir fried? Oh deep fried okay. Oh that is wonderful. It has a really fragrant ginger, maybe ginger, and lemongrass kind of flavor to it and then also that coconut. The coconut really comes in nicely. Oh that’s nice. It’s kind of a, kind of like a sweet herbal flavor. Okay they also have some Sambal, which you can add. I’m gonna try some of this Sambal. And I think that is rice cake on this bite. yeah that is a spicy Sambal actually. Oh yeah. It is spicy and a little bit sour and it’s very popular to eat the Krupuk, which are crackers with the curry and so I have reached the bottom of the bowl and you can dip it into all that rich coconut milk curry sauce. Oh that is good. The cracker is really crispy but then it just kind of soaks up all of that curry sauce. That was really good and a much different type of Laksa, a much different mixture of ingredients than any other type of Laksa I’ve ever had in Malaysia or Singapore. Hello. We just drove down the street just a couple minutes and we are at our next food stop, which serves, it’s called Toge Goreng, which is fried bean sprouts but it is some kind of interesting dish that is very famous from right here.
They are cooking over a wood fire and then there is a big bowl full of bean sprouts. Okay so he first grabs some, oh some rice cake and then he’s gonna go in for some, he chooses some of the bean sprouts from the boiling water there so he puts them onto the rice cakes. Oh and then he’s just grabbing a handful of noodles, just quickly blanching them and then into the bowl. And then he dumps out all of the water. And then on, I think that’s some tofu and then he goes on with some, I think it’s soybean sauce. Oh and something in a Heineken bottle. These guys are so good at what they do that I bet they could make this entire dish with their eyes closed. They do it so rhythmically and so expertly. I just got my bowl of the dish and although the name is fried bean sprouts, it’s actually not fried at all, it’s boiled bean sprouts or just blanched bean sprouts with a bunch of different ingredients. And then they also served some Sambal in the spoon so I will just sort of mix it around. I guess I gotta, I gotta try some of those bean sprouts and some of the rice cake. That has a very unique flavor. I think from that fermented bean sauce. Yeah it has a little bit of a fermented flavor to it, definitely, kind of, not quite cheese but starting to get to the cheese flavor and then it’s kind of sweet and salty at the same time as well. And then those bean sprouts are really crisp but then you’ve got pieces of soft rice cake and silky soft tofu as well. That’s a very interesting mix and a lot of textures going on. Definitely the key to that dish is the fermented soybean sauce. That’s where most of the flavor was coming from and they said that they grill the soybeans right here in this area. That’s where all the flavor was and then the bean sprouts and the other tofu and the rice cakes just kind of give it some body and some texture.
We have just arrived to the country home in the rice fields and this is where we’re gonna spend I think most of the day just relaxing here and enjoying the countryside. It’s really beautiful. We are in the rice paddy fields. Oh I didn’t even know. This is a Durian tree. I’m standing right underneath a Durian Tree. I was just walking around. I didn’t even realize I was standing underneath a Durian tree. Man The round one is Misro. David Misro. Man The long one is Combro. Combro. And it’s deep fried some kind of cassava fritter. That is really crispy and then kind of gooey in the inside and then in the middle is I think it’s soybean right? It looks like minced meat but it’s actually soybean. Oh that’s delicious. This one is supposed to be the sweet one called Misro. It tastes kind of like honey but it’s palm sugar. And now having some coconut water and coconut meat straight from the coconuts. These are young coconuts, so the meat is very soft. And I think these came from a tree right around here somewhere. Coconut is one of the greatest things in the world. Oh that’s just pure buttery coconut and it’s not too sweet, but so creamy buttery. Oh man it’s good. And that coconut meat is so young that it just dissolves as you eat it.
I am loving this place. It is a fruit paradise. There are rice fields but then surrounding the rice fields, there are Durian trees, there are guava trees, banana trees, there are I think a Rambutan tree. What else did I see? There are some berries, un identified berries, but lots and lots of fruit. This is a beautiful little jungle, rice paddy paradise here. And I think we are on our way now to go to a place where they are harvesting honey. we just took about a 15minute drive from the house to an area that is home to a bee farm and this area is famous for honey. At first we walked through the village but now we are really getting out here into the rice paddies and into the mountains in a valley. It is gorgeous walking passed the river. Hello, hello. Lots of friendly people. Yeah, wow and even the air is much cooler and not nearly as humid. There is a mountain breeze. I am loving it. The food will taste so much better after the walk. Oh wow.
We got a good look at the bees but unfortunately is not here, whoa there’s a bee. We made it back to the village. I think we’re gonna drive back to the house now and I think it’s time for lunch. We just arrived back to the house and we are sitting down for a Sundanese feast, which is food from this region. This meal of eating altogether is called a Botram and they put down a couple banana leaves and then spread rice out into the entire middle just filling the middle of the banana leaf and then there are side dished all around. This is incredible. So all the rice is here in the middle. So you can grab some rice to put onto your portion of, my portion of the banana leaf right here. And I just took a couple of, these are Jengkol beans, which are similar to stink beans and I really love Jengkol beans, I’m gonna take a bite of that immediately. Oh she is serving me some of the banana blossom, banana flower curry. I love Jengkol. That’s like a giant stink bean. Because it’s cooked it is kind of a sticky texture. If you eat them raw, they are crisp. Oh man, that is marvelous. How is it man? Jengkol is one of the best things on earth. David Yeah I agree. When people say it is stinky, I don’t get why. This is the banana blossom with some shrimp. Oh and that rice is really good as well. That rice. There are little fish. I don’t know if you can see, but there are little fried fish all mixed in with the rice. And that gives it a really wonderful fish fragrance. Dude this food, oh thank you man. I’m gonna grab some of this Sambal. Oh yeah. Oh pea eggplants okay. The way the rice is prepared with bay leaves and with spices and is there coconut milk in there too? Man No, no. No coconut milk. Okay so it’s just spices and herbs inside the rice.
It’s called and oh yeah and that’s with the dried fish as well. The crispy, little crispy dried fish and this entire meal is ridiculously good. I’ve got so many things going on. I dug into this piece of grilled chicken. There is a fried catfish and so many different types of Sambal as well. Oh man it’s just insanely good. This is a Sambal with chilis and there are little, there are little pieces of stink bean in here as well. And it’s just extraordinary flavors. And it helps to kind of lean over so you can get a lot of food into your mouth. The flavors are just insane. I just got this little fried eel. It looks like a little cobra and it’s curled up and it’s deep fried andI will add some of this, this stinky bean Sambal, which is really good. Alright, maybe I will break him in half. Oh yeah it’s just solidly crispy. I’ll eat that head first. yeah it’s just solidly deep fried. It’s crispy and then all that flavor is in that Sambal. Oh that’s spicy, slightly stinky bean flavor. It’s wondrous. The food is so incredibly good. The Jengkol beans in particular, actually everything is good but the Jengkol beans are just unbelievable actually.
I just stood up to wash my hands and I didn’t realize how full I was sitting down leaning over but when I stand up, oh man. I am feeling full. And I’m soothing myself now with another cup of fresh coconut water. Oh man, that was seriously one of the most remarkable meals both the food flavor and also the atmosphere and the style of eating with the entire family. This has just been an incredible meal experience. When you’re eating off of a communal leaf like that, you never, you can’t really tell how much food you ate until you’re stuffed because there is no plate to like see and judge how much food you eat but you just keep on eating and grabbing and eating and grabbing and one of the ladies just kept serving me more and more food and I welcomed it and that was seriously just an incredibly remarkable meal. That little eel that I just ate is right here. There’s a hook attached to it and he has a little piece of shrimp or something on the hook and then he puts that string down an eel hole and just waits and hopes it bites I think. And he already has a couple of them. Okay, guava. That’s good.
This one is nice. Ohh look at that. We are walking through the rice fields searching for some Pomelo. Pomelo. Yes, Pomelo. Okay, we have come to the Pomelo tree. This is the full Pomelo but it’s been peeled. It has a pretty thick skin and then pith on it. And then this is the fruit inside. It’s actually, the actual fruit inside is quite small, almost like an orange size on this one. And you typically the skin is so thick that it’s hard to eat so you peel off all the pith and then you just eat all of the, the fruit inside. Whoa, that’s sour. It’s the type of sour that makes your teeth kind of hurt instantly but I love it. So sour, but juicy and crisp at the same time. And there is something so amazing about eating fruit that has just been picked off the tree just minutes ago. It just started raining. Man So the first shot, you cannot hit it right away. You have to bounce it off the wall. Since it’s raining, we getting ready to play a traditional Indonesian game. It’s like, it’s kind of like billiards, like pool but it’s just with your fingers. And it’s just a small square board. Man Just bounce it off this thing. David You flick it or you? Man Yes. It’s really an addictive game. We just sat there for and hour and played and the time went by really fast.
We’re gonna head into Bogor now I think to eat and then after that we’re going back to Jakarta. We made it to Bogor and we’re gonna have dinner at a restaurant called Ampera, which is a Sundanese restaurant. Oh so can he just go through the buffet and choose whatever you want. And then they cook it again for you. And they have all the food in buffet style but you just go through with your plate and choose the different items that you want. The dishes are all prepared but when you order them, then they will reheat them, either deep fry them or steam them or whatever method of cooking that they used to prepare them, they will reheat way and then you eat everything with rice and Sambal. So what I really wanted to try for Sundanese them that food is pepes and pepes are little packets of either, it can be a mixture of different ingredients all wrapped into a banana leaf and I think these are steamed and as soon as I opened that you can smell the aroma of herbs coming out of there. This is chicken one? I think it’s chicken. It looks like chicken or it looks like chicken. Yeah, it’s chicken. That has a really herbal flavor. Oh man, maybe it’s that bay leaf coming in there really strongly and then also, it has kind of a clove flavor. I’m not sure if there are cloves in there or cardamom or something along those lines and then really aromatic and then just really herbal.
They took the whole stink bean pod and deep fried the entire thing and then they sliced it in half so you can have easier access and you should just be able to just pop these out and it has a little skin around it. Yeah. Just natural vitamins. Oh, those are pretty strong as well. Oh yeah. I’m gonna take the next stink bean and dip it into the Sambal, dip it into that chili sauce, the rice as well. Okay this is the original classic with fish and it’s a little, is it a mackerel. Man Yeah I think so, mackerel. oh, let me take a piece of that fish and grab some of that. It looks like coconut down there on you have that stink bean on my plate still. Wow, that fish is really salty. Wow, extremely salty. I think that’s just a pure salted fish. The fish pepes was just too salty but I think it’s because people would normally eat that with a bunch of rice, a whole plate of rice and just one little bit of fish. So, that was too salty for me but the overall food was really good. We are now heading back to Jakarta. The better oh, we’re going down here, we made it back to the big city, Jakarta. But before we go back to our hotel, we are just stopping for a quick dessert along the big road. Man It’s Wedang Ronde. It’s a ginger soup base. It’s sweet and it has tapioca balls. This is a regular one. This one has peanuts in it. David Okay, and then what is this one? Man This one is called Sekoteng. It is basically the same soup base but they have like different kind of stuff in here. All kinds of stuff, stuff I don’t even know.
The jelly like small. Oh you can smell that aroma of ginger steaming off of those bowls. That ginger is so soothing on the throat. And then that little dumpling is filled with crushed peanuts so as soon as you bite it, it’s kind of sticky and gooey, but then as soon as you bite it, it’s like a burst of peanut butter that comes out. Okay next one, some of these jellies, it looks like that’s some kind of grain. Yep, it’s called Jelly. This one is the same ginger soup but then these white things are a type of palm fruit that is similar tasting and feeling to coconut but more gelatinous. But it’s kind of a similar, yeah it’s a type of palm fruit and so that is the main ingredient instead of the dumplings. Yeah, I like this as a dessert because of that strong ginger flavor. Ying and I just made it back to the hotel. That was a fantastic day. The highlight being that family feast for lunch. That was just a once in a life time meal to never forget. I wanna say a huge thank you to Ken and Gratiana as well as her entire family.