Complete Information on Indonesia

Posts tagged ‘Rice’

The downside of convenience stores in Indonesia

Convenience stores are now everywhere and in every corner of the world.

Indonesia can now be said as a country with a million mini markets or convenience stores, and in the future will be a country with a million malls.

They are everywhere in Indonesia. Well, they are convenient but the convenience come with the downside.
It is that the service is too rigid and formal. People come in, take what they need, go to the counter, and pay for them. There are chit chats sometimes, but it feels like it’s just for formality.
It is the same with malls. The service is no different compared to convenience stores. What is worse, they are growing rapidly in numbers. It’s not weird to see two competitive convenience store side by side.

Though, it’s not that weird to see the growth since they are quick to pick up the trend in Indonesia. The convenience stores use the concept of mini market and a cafe. Indonesian people welcome it as youngsters love to hang out with their friends.

But, the formal and rigid service really wastes the kindness and warmth of Indonesian people. You can not find this kindness in those malls or convenience stores.
If you want, you can find it in a ‘warteg‘ (warung Tegal or Tegal stalls). Basically, they sell food and drinks with a very cheap price if compared to convenience store and malls. Fried rice, instant noodle, coffee, iced sweetened tea and other kinds of food can be found there with a fair price.

It is here where you can find kindness, having a chit chat with Indonesian people. The food is not bad too, although you might need a stomachache medicine like Norit because your stomach need to get used to Indonesian food.

(See this video below about a ‘warteg‘)

Sadly, the numbers of ‘warteg‘ are decreasing. It seems Indonesian people are moving towards efficiency rather than socialization. Such a waste for Indonesian’s kindness, isn’t it?

Going to a picnic without lunch box? No worries

Going to a picnic in a mountain or simply to a park nearby must be fun, especially if we bring our own lunch boxes.

But do you know that in Indonesia, there is no habit like that? Indonesian people do not bring their own lunch box or picnic bag. Many reasons cause it, such as lazy to cook and prepare it, not enough ingredients to cook, and probably the most affecting reason of them all is that they prefer to try the local cuisine.

There are a wide variety of cuisines in Indonesia. Fried rice and fried noodle are not the authentic ones because these are from China originally. Some of the authentic ones are the Padang, Sundanese, Makassar, and Javanese food. Travelling to somewhere for a picnic means coming to a new place. Coming to a new place means different cuisine.
This difference in food encourages Indonesian people to not bring their picnic bag or lunch box, but instead taste the new and unique local cuisine.

Bandung, one of the local and international tourist spot in Indonesia, has many local cuisines to offer.

So, if you want to go to holiday or have a picnic in one of many Indonesia’s tourist spots, you don’t need to bring a lunch box. Enjoy the local cuisine, meet the new and friendly Indonesians, and meet the unique local culture.

(See this video below about a culinary destination in Bandung, West Java, Indonesia)

It’s far better than bringing your own lunch box, right?

(Credits go respectfully to the rightful owner)

Street at day, restaurant at night

All streets in all countries are only streets all day long.  There is nothing except city decorations, pedestrians, beggars, and hawkers or sellers.

But do you know that in Indonesia, a normal street at day can be changed to an open-air streetside restaurant at night?
Malioboro street in Yogyakarta is one of those unique streets. The street is the center of Yogyakarta’s largest tourist district which is surrounded by many restaurants and hotels nearby.

If you are a souvenir lover, this street is your heaven. The street is crowded with small stalls selling variety of local goods like batik, silvers, leather puppets, rattan ornaments, bamboo handicrafts, blangkon, miniature of traditional vehicles, key chains, and other accessories. If you are good at bargaining, you can buy these items for a very cheap price. Try to bargain for a 50 % cut.

At night, it is another heaven for culinary lovers. A very unique culture of eating in the streetside restaurants is ‘lesehan’ or sitting on the ground.
When night comes, most of the streets will be closed by several mats, tables, and food stalls. The hygiene is not too good because it’s on the streetside, but the unique experience of eating in ‘lesehan‘ style and enjoying the street band can only be felt in Indonesia.

(See this video about the Malioboro street at day)

(And this video about Malioboro street at night, and ‘lesehan’ style)

(Credits go respectfully to the rightful owner)

Why do chores when you can hire a housemaid?

The butler and maid system in England was a very magnificent yet luxurious system. Having everything taken care of without breaking a sweat at all feels so great, but of course, they are only for rich people as the cost for having a butler or a maid is very expensive.

BUT in Indonesia, you can have a housemaid with a far cheaper cost. They are called pembantu in Indonesia, and usually people hire the female ones. Their salary varies from IDR 1.000.000 ($ US 100) to IDR 2.000.000 ($ US 200).
They can do the same magic with the butler and maid in England.
When you get home, you don’t need to put your shoes neatly or in a shoe box. The maid will do it for you.
Then, you are getting in, realizing that the floor is clean because it has been swept and mopped by the maid.
Remove your socks, clothes, and pants on the floor or on the sofa. Leave them there and the maid will wash and iron them for you. Tomorrow or the day after tomorrow, they will be ready again for you to use them.
If you have a bathtub, ask your maid to prepare the water. If you want to eat, the maid can cook for you. This is why people hire the female ones.
If you want coffee, just ask for coffee and it will be served for you. After you finish drinking the coffee, just leave the mug or cup there or put it in the kitchen and your maid will clean it for you.
If you have a garden, they can tend the garden and water it everyday.
If you have children, they can babysit for you.

A unique thing to know is that you don’t need to worry if you don’t have a washing machine in your house, because your maid can be a washing machine.
The maid can wash all kinds of clothings with the washing board. All she needs is energy because it is powered by a human, and a washing board with soaps.

Washing board

Washing board

So, why do chores when you can hire a housemaid?

(See this video below to see a maid washing and cleaning)

Don’t worry, at least your maid won’t use the dirty water from the river to clean the dishes and the clothes.

(Credits go respectfully to the rightful owner)

Banana leaves, more valuable than the banana itself?

Who doesn’t like the yellow fruit which gives many benefits like potassium for the sports enthusiasts, fiber that prevents heart disease, vitamins to protect eyesight, banana for banana split, and many other benefits.

BUT, do you know that actually banana leaves are more valuable than the banana itself in Indonesia?
Why? Not because it can be used as an umbrella. It is simply because the banana leaves can be used as a pad for food. Furthermore, the food seems to taste better when served on the banana leaf.

Investing in the banana tree field might be wise as the market is everywhere.

(See this video about the banana leaf used as a food pad, it does look tastier than just using a plate, right?)

(Credits are given respectfully to the rightful owner)

Chili and Crackers, so incomplete without them

I am sure some of you, if not most, are comfortable with eating food as it is.
Steak, fried rice, fried chicken, fried fish, pizza, spaghetti, noodles, seafood, all are as they are and without asking for other condiments.

Indonesian people can eat like that too, BUT they don’t feel complete. They would feel like the food could have been better if something else is added.
So, say hello to the two most looked-for and eaten, chili and crackers.

Chili, very well-known for its spicy taste, has been pleasing the Indonesian’s tongue for centuries. Without it, the food tastes flavorless.
Crackers, very famous for its crispy texture, has always been the complement for any food, especially fried rice.

(See this commercial video about one of the most popular chili sauce brand in Indonesia)

(Even the President of United States agrees that “the bakso (meatball), the nasi goreng (fried rice), emping, the krupuk (cracker), all are delicious)

(Credits go respectfully to the rightful owner)

Indonesia, still a plastic country?

“Los Angeles Prohibits The Use of Plastic Bags”
“Plastic Bags Are Officially Banned in Switzerland”
“Starting Jan 1, Italy Bans The Use of Plastic Bags”
“Most Korean Actors And Actresses Used To Have Plastic Surgery”

Wait, the last one is unrelated to this post.

I am sure some of you have heard these big news. Many countries all around the world have banned or prohibited the use of plastic bags. China, French, Rwanda, Uganda, Bangladesh, Myanmar, Australia, and some countries across India have done it very well. Supermarket like Wal-Mart are now prohibited too and has to charge the buyer for each plastic bag they use, only if.

The once very popular mean of carrying something is now banned. No wonder though because no matter how efficient it is, the plastic bag is actually used for only 25 minutes on average and needs around 100 years to degrade.

MEANWHILE in Indonesia, the daily weather forecast is “Cloudy with a chance of plastic bags”. You can bet the forecast is always right because they are everywhere, literally.

Furthermore, when shopping in a big supermarket like Carrefour or Hypermart, one full trolley translates to 10-15 plastic bags. Well, this is Indonesia. No matter how hard the government tells its people to stop using plastic bags, they are still the most convenient. The only solution is perhaps to find another convenient innovation, which is surely not the ‘Bring your own shopping bag’ thing.

(See this video about saying no to plastic bags)

(Credits go respectfully to the rightful owner)

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