Indonesia Banget #16: No Rice Not Complete

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This monthโ€™s Indonesia banget is not going to be along post ๐Ÿ™‚

This post is my 1000th post ๐Ÿ™‚
How wonderful that my 100th post is about my country.

As we far as I know, westerners love eating bread. Their stomach can be full just by eating bread…but that is not the case in my country.

Indonesia just like most Asian countries loves rice!! What I meant by rice is of course cooked rice not raw rice ๐Ÿ˜‰ . Cooked rice is called Nasi while uncooked rice is called Beras in Indonesian language. Rice is the main food in my country. Most Indonesian will say that they havenโ€™t eaten yet if they havenโ€™t eaten rice or their stomach is not full yet because they havenโ€™t eaten rice or I will so hungry again because I only eat … (Fill with something non-rice food).

Yes!! Rice is the most important meal of Indonesian people.

Rice with many choices of lauk (Copyright belongs to Tuti Nonka's Veranda)

I am not talking about the very rich people who once lived abroad. I am talking about the majority of Indonesian people. Small group of Indonesian can be found eating nothing but bread or potato but most only eat potato and bread as side meal. Potato even used as lauk (meal to company the rice)

Lauk stands for meal that followed the rice. We do not eat only rice (if we can manage it, the poorest sometimes canโ€™t afford making or buying lauk). To cook rice is simple, we only need to steam it…but lauk is the one that takes most of our cooking time. It can be fish, shrimp, potato, meat, vegetables, and many more. Different province has different kind of special lauk.

Paddy Field (copyright belongs to Bzhot)

Because rice is Indonesian main food, we can find so many Paddy Fields which we called as Sawah here. Although sad but true, more and more fields are getting turn into houses ๐Ÿ˜ฆ soon. In the early 80s we can fulfill the quota of rice for our people but not anymore now. In 1988 we have to import hundred thousands of tons of rice. It gets bigger every year. Now, it is said that we are the biggest rice importer in the world, we imported around 50% of the world rice stock. (Info taken from Tuti Nonkaโ€™s Veranda). I Hope the government can solve this problem soon.

Although most Indonesian eat rice, but there are some islands and provinces that do not eat rice. They eat sagu or singkong (sago or cassava), mostly people in the east part of Indonesia. I canโ€™t tell much about the sago eater because I am one of the rice eaters ๐Ÿ˜‰

So…expect rice when you visit Indonesian Restaurant in your country ๐Ÿ˜‰

…and here is my dinner just now ๐Ÿ˜‰

Nasi with lauk Tofu+shrimp balado

I found this wonderful post to prove that Indonesian MUST eat rice to fill their stomach ;). Nova went to Singapore and trying to find food:

Dan akhirnya kami menemukan McD.
Tapi apa yg terjadi…??? McD nya cuma jual Burger dan French Fries.. Mana kenyaaaaaaang..??


And weย  finally found McD.
But what happened? That McD only sells Burger and French Fries…
My stomach won’t be full!!!

And she finally found what she wanted, rice with lauk ๐Ÿ˜‰

Copyright belongs to Neo Butterfly




  1. I used to eat a lot of rice but somehow I got too skinny. If I don’t want to be too skinny I need to eat spaghetti. Sounds odd, I know but my metabolism is too fast. But I really would love to eat what you just had.

    1. eh? I thought eating rice is the one that makes someone fat. If I eat too much rice, my weight will definitely increase ๐Ÿ˜‰

      You can make that easily, all you need are chilly, shrimp and tofu ๐Ÿ˜‰

      1. no, mashed potatoes taste like butter and potatoes and the spices you put in it ๐Ÿ™‚ while rice usually covers up all possible spices. But I don’t eat potatoes often either … they are too caloric for me ๐Ÿ™‚
        However I do use rice when I make some patties, like my famous peas patties ๐Ÿ™‚ You cook the rice and peas separately, cooled them down. Then mash the peas, add garlic, salt, pepper, spices, rice and one egg and make patties of it, which you then fry in the oil until they turn gold. The secret is mashing the peas ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. Mmmmmm!! I just love rice…. especially wild rice, which is something we have here in the US, a mixture of dark colored grains from native grass that grows here. Sooooo darn tasty!! I like it with stir fried mushrooms and onions….. and chilies of course!! But white rice is good too! I always have that with curry.

    (And I eat lots more curry than most other American women my age probably do, Hehehehe!! ;))

    1. Ah yes,my student told me that US Rice is darker, since she has been eating Indonesian white rice all her life, she found the darker rice a bit unusual.
      Are you talking about Japanese Curry or other Curry? if there is other curry?

      1. I like all sorts of curry. It’s probably my favorite snack food of all time. ๐Ÿ˜‰

        Indian, Thai, Malay, Japanese…. it doesn’t really matter… each has it’s own spicy appeal for me. My mother used to wonder how I got to be so fond of it as a child as neither she nor grandma really liked it as much as I.

        1. Ow…I have only tasted Japanese Curry, which tasted like Indonesian Sate Padang ( You might like this post ๐Ÿ˜‰ but watch out you might not like Curry anymore … for that,please blame Kroten ๐Ÿ˜‰ )

          1. Hahaha!!! Naughty, naughty Kroten!! Puppy dogs do that too… but thankfully not kitties!! ๐Ÿ˜‰

            I have had Peanut satay… is that a lot like Sate Padang? It looks a lot like it in the picture… (and it does look like something else too…. ๐Ÿ˜‰ )

          2. No, it’s different. It tastes so much like Japanese curry. The different is the meat is sticked in stick while the meat in Japanese curry is mixed in that yellow liquid (I don’t know the English word for that)

            hahaha my dear Kroten still has a lot to learn ๐Ÿ˜‰

  3. I’m Canadian born but had rice nearly daily for at least dinner. However that changed about 5 years ago when I got a near diabetes 2 reading which I must control food that is high glycemic index, food that breaks down into sugars easily because my natural insulin production in my pancreas is not as good.

    So I haven’t eaten rice in the 4 months or so. When I do eat alot of white rice now, ie. in sushi, I don’t feel well. In place of that I chose fresh light Asian noodles or dried light Asian noodles as my carb for dinner. Same could be said for eating too much bread. The upside of all this, is that it does help control abit of weight over the years. This can happen later in life to some people….who are Asian descent. Yes, I do miss eating lots of sushi an sashimi. Vancouver offers alot of choice.

  4. Hi Jean, it’s nice of you to dropping by and comment.
    Sorry to hear about your condition. People who have diabetes here are also being told not to eat rice, but breaking down the habbit is really hard. I mean, we eat rice 3times a day. Most Asian food are paired with rice.

    ah yes, the weight problem…hehe I am having that problem ๐Ÿ˜‰

  5. I grew up in eastern Indonesia. We sometimes substitute our rice with cassava, sago, or banana. I used to breakfast with sago bar, dipped it in a sweet hot tea. ๐Ÿ™‚

      1. AFAIK, I think partly because Eastern Indonesia is mostly sea and the climate is hotter and drier than the other part. Not ideal for rice plantation (I guess..?) but apparently is good enough for Sago Palm. Its far easier to find Sago Palm than Rice in eastern islands. Rice itself isn’t native to eastern Indonesia and only introduced later, while Sago has been the staple food in the east for centuries. Old record from the Spanish stated it.

        East Indonesian (especially Moluccan – both south and north) people has a strong seafaring tradition. And one form of Sago which is Sagu Lempeng or Sago Bar, was probably invented to support their long activity at sea. It has the durability up to two years if stored in good container (CMIIW). This tradition can still be seen today. Many fisherman/seaman will equip themselves with the Sagu Lempeng as food supply.

        Over time, as more people from other part of Indonesia moved to the east, rice becoming more popular and influencing the local diet. Its now common to see rice and sago are served side by side.

        I grew up in Ternate – North Moluccas. My father was a civil servant, and the policy at the time allowed us to receive rice (Beras Jatah) from the government (BULOG) every month. But, sometimes it was in poor quality so from time to time we reverted back to and/or mixed it with Sago and Cassava. It was never a problem for me or my father (who himself a native), but not so with my mother who was of rice eating people (Makassar). ๐Ÿ˜€

        1. Thank you so much for the explanation Omzyr ๐Ÿ™‚
          That helps a lot…especially for people who haven’t gone to the east part of our Country.

        2. i grew up in different part of indonesia (aceh, ambon and java),
          it seems the no-rice-not-complete mantra is only for javanese,
          while acehnese and ambonese, i don’t see any difficulties to have daily meals without rice, one of my acehnese friends can just eat lauk (mainly seafood) without rice and live with it ๐Ÿ™‚ while some time’s we eat cassava (fried or boiled) as source of carbs.

          meanwhile in eastern part seems to have more variation when it comes to staple food, we can easily eat banana, nuts, rice cooked with nuts and coconut milk, sago bar, sago porridge (or papeda in native), roots like cassava, ubi, talas.

          1. Maybe it depends on the person? I grew up in Jakarta with mixed Sumatra lifestyle. My parents are Acehnese & Sundanese. I can have meals without rice, yes. But it’s actually only me in my whole family who is like that. The others (my Acehnese father & his siblings) are very rice dependent. But then again, even just in Aceh the cultures are vary between regions. (Our country does very rich in term of culture uh?).
            Now I’m really curious how our Ina brothers and sisters in Borneo and Central Ina see this case.. ๐Ÿ™‚

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