PLANCONG.COM – Best Local Food In Bali. Balinese food gets me excited every time we come back to Indonesia’s most popular holiday spot. I get excited about unpretentious flavours and time-tested spices that result in mouth-watering food that I just can’t get enough of. While other Southeast Asian cuisines may offer a similar selection of dishes, many foods in Bali have a unique twist with tantalising flavours. Next time you are relaxing in Bali, you simply must try all ten of these.
Bali as a tourist spot is also equipped with special foods that can be included in the culinary list. Balinese culinary uses Balinese spices which have their own taste. One of the popular ones is the Betutu Chicken.
The island of Bali is the most popular destination in Indonesia. The charm of a million beautiful seas makes Bali never devoid of local and foreign visitors. Not only rich in tourist attractions, the Island of the Gods also has a variety of delicious culinary delights.
Where to find the local food in Bali?
Here’s one for the foodies – if food tops the list as your number one reason for travel, you’ll be glad to know that Bali is the ultimate food paradise! What’s even better is that you don’t have to break the bank to fill your bellies. From traditional Balinese restaurants to cool cafe joints and not forgetting authentic street food, the island has all your food cravings covered.
We’ve scouted the island and filled our tummies to bring you only the food worth eating. These food don’t just taste good, most of them are #foodporn goals as well! Read on to find out where to find the best food in Bali!
Noodles. This is the most popular staple of the Balinese. They literally eat it for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Rice is grown all over Bali, so there’s no shortage of this grain all year round. I don’t think I’ve ever had a bad Nasi Goreng in Bali – every chef knows how to do it justice, from the 5 star resorts the roadside stalls. So simple yet so delicious.
Unlike its Malaysian counterpart, Indonesian sate is not satay. Mashed chicken is blended with an array of spices, melded onto a stick (usually lemongrass) and barbequed. Unless written on the menu, it probably won’t include peanut sauce While we prefer the chicken sate (sate ayam), Indonesia specialises in fish sate (lilit ikan).
The meat that is processed into satay lilit is glued to the stick of the satay which is made of bamboo stalks or lemongrass stalks. The satay meat ingredient itself is a special spiced minced meat. The type of meat for Balinese satay itself uses animal meat ranging from chicken, beef, pork, and mackerel fish. Sate lilit is easy to find in Bali because almost all food stalls provide this menu.
Bali’s most famed dish – the suckling pig. Pork is rubbed with turmeric, stuffed with a spice paste (usually coriander seeds, lemongrass, lime leaves, salam leaves, chillies, black pepper, garlic, red shallots, ginger and lesser galangal) and then roasted on a spit over coconut husks or wood until super tender.
Beware when ordering this – it’s nose-to-tail dining, so you might receive an obscure piece of pork on your plate. Enjoy!
Nasi Campur means “mixed rice” and usually consists of small portions of vegetables, fish or meat with a mound of steamed rice. There’s no 1 “right” combination of flavours, so it’s rarely the same. That is what makes it so fun – you never know exactly what you’re going to get. Think of it as an Indonesian antipasto.
Smoked duck is probably one of the more unique dishes in Bali. The duck is rubbed and stuffed with a mix of spices, wrapped in an areca palm leaf or betel nut bark and smoked with the embers of rice husks. Most restaurants require one day’s notice since cooking takes around 12 hours.
A mini rijstafel is a meal to be shared. Rijsttafel is a Dutch word that literally means “rice table”, a name that has stuck since colonial times. Depending where you order, it usually comes out all at the same time and contains a mixed selection of Balinese and Indonesian delicacies like Bebek betutu (smoked duck), chicken with sambal, prawns, pork & chicken sates, sayur urap (mixed Bali vegetables), potato croquettes, tempe, tofu and yellow nasi tumpeng (rice cone).
“Mix-mix” is one of Indonesian’s best-known dishes. Essentially it is a vegetable salad bathed in a classic peanut sauce. While it’s a cold salad, I think it would taste awesome warm too. At its base are boiled long beans, spinach, potato, corn, egg and bean sprouts coupled with cucumber, tofu and tempe.
You can try these Balinese foods almost anywhere, from budget to upscale restaurants, from roadside food vendors to luxury hotels. But whatever you do, make sure you tick them all off.
I particularly love that most ingredients in these dishes are sourced locally so they’re as fresh as can get. Spice mixes are made by hand. There’s little reliance on processed ingredients.