Bali Eats

Tulen is different. Many restaurants in Bali offer ‘Balinese’ cuisine. More often than not they are general Indonesian dishes rather than Balinese. Not at Tulen where classic local dishes are served in the most relaxing of surroundings, The seating is mostly along a covered terrace within landscaped gardens. This hidden jewel up in Junjunkan on Jln. Sri Wedari, just above the Ubud Royal Palace also offers a few non Balinese dishes, to suit every taste in a group, but even these often have a local touch. Start with cold dishes Lawat Bebek [finely diced duck meat tossed with vegetables and grated coconut] or Ayam Mesisit{smoked chicken, sambal matah and fried shallots]. Warm starters can be Mekuah be Pasih [red snapper fish soup with kemangi leaves] or Soto Kambing [goat shank soup with fresh daikon]. Mains can be a very unique Octopus Rendang [slow cooked octopus with rendang spices in coconut cream, served with turmeric rice] or Babi Tulen [roasted crispy skin pork belly, basa gede, cassava leaves, purple cassava mash]. For the non Balinese there is an Indian Platter [a vegetarian Madras curry, palak paneer, chana masala, paratha] or a Thai Red Chicken Curry [boneless chicken thighs, bamboo shoots, Thai eggplants, oyster mushrooms, fresh coriander]. To finish a Tamarillo Durian [poached tamarillo, cinnamon, homemade durian ice cream

Tajine, Jln. Mertanadi, Kerobokan serves traditional Moroccan food with authentic taste. Cooking many hours in traditional tajine pots it is the real thing, the best since Khaima. Algerian and Moroccan tajine dishes are slow-cooked savory stews, typically made with sliced meat, poultry or fish together with vegetables or fruit. Spices, nuts, and dried fruits are also used. Common spices include ginger, cumin, turmeric, cinnamon, and saffron. Paprika and chili are used in vegetable tajines. The sweet and sour combination is common in tajine dishes like lamb with prunes and spices. Tajines are generally served with bread. Because the domed or cone-shaped lid of the tajine pot traps steam and returns the condensed liquid to the pot, a minimal amount of water is needed to cook meats and vegetables. The result is tender and packed with flacour.

Biku, Jln. Petitenget, Kerobokan, continues to offer a relaxing escape from the pandemic with its all day offering of High Teas, although there is also a full menu of alternate dishes for breakfast, lunch or dinner. A few years ago, whilst in Singapore, I decided to investigate the ‘famous’ High Tea at Raffles hotel, so I joined the long queue, along the terrace, with a host of tourists [mostly Japanese], paid the exorbitant fee at the door, and filed past a series of tables to collect from the bits pieces that were left after others in front of me had piled their trays as high as possible with so much food that they could not possibly eat all. Then to the tea counter and to find a corner of a small table where I could sit and eat what turned out to be a rather pathetic High Tea. What a difference to Biku and it charming setting, overlooked by the God Biku himself, where the attentive Ibu Asri [the Aussie Princess] hovers around to ensure everyone is happy. Your selected [there are many varieties] complete High Tea [see attached picture] is delivered to your table, fresh from the kitchen, in a manner impossible to compare with the awful Singapore experience. The happy chatter and the smiling faces everywhere, tell all.

Gooseberry is above Bingin Beach at Pecatu. The restaurant has air conditioning inside as well as outdoor spaces overlooking the pool. Gooseberry serves separate menus for Breakfast, Brunch/Lunch & Dinner’ Classic western cuisine with a French touch. Breakfast can be Shakshuka [baked eggs in a tomato, pepper and sweet potato spiced stew, served with either flatbread or gluten free bread], a Potato Waffle [topped with watercress, confit cherry tomatoes, scrambled or poached eggs, bacon (or cured salmon], or a French Omelette Souflee. For Brunch there are Pumpkin or Zucchini soups, Gnocchi.Tartufo [housemade gnocchi, sage cream sauce, truffle oil, grated parmesan], or all time favourite, Fish & Chips [battered Dory fillet, mashed peas, vinegar chips, house-made tartar sauce]. The dinner menu goes more up-market. An entrée of Fried Coconut Prawns or Halloumi with Chilli, mains of a Tartare of lemon linguini and prawns, an unusual Rigatoni Cauliflower Bolognese or a Salad Nicoise [baby gem, asparagus, soft egg, rare-seared tuna, nori, potato, wasabi vinaigrette (GF)]. From the BBQ, Steaks, Chicken. Seafood and Kebabs.

Sensorium, Jln. Pantai Batu Bolong, Canggu, is an Australian restaurant with Japanese touches. Breakfasts, snacks and meals are mostly dishes not seen anywhere else in Bali, such as an Asian Pulled Pork Egg Benedict, or the unique Textural of Mushroom. Chilli Scrambled Eggs or Japanese style Open Scrambled Eggs. Bulgogi Beef Burger, Cauliflower Hummus on Toast, Crisp Quesadillas, Vegetarian Ramen and Ice Cream Sandwiches are other dishes with a difference,

The Melting Pot, on Jln. Pengsekan, Ubud, has had yet anothet birthday, doing what it does best. It is much more than just a sports bar [though one of Bali’s best], it is also Bali’s No.1 Texan restaurant. That description includes a few different cuisines, just all of those dishes that are popular in Texas. Also on their menu are the very popular Sliders [mini hamburgers]. Hot Link Sliders are a coil of small linked pork sausages, smothered with caramelized onions and a dab of Dijon mustard in a mini poppy seed hamburger bun. The Steak Sandwich Slider is very different, a fold of steak [40gm] with caramelized onions and mozzarella cheese. There is just one danger, eat one of these and you will immediately order another one!


By Gerry Williams

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