Recipe for a Balinese Feast
©Linda Watanabe McFerrin
We gathered the writers in advance of our departure to Indonesia at the James Presho House for a Balinese dinner; the menu: spring roll appetizers; gado-gado; nasi goreng; a meaty, kebab-like version of chicken satay; and ice cream with crystallized ginger. Nice try.
Here, in Ubud with the Wanderland gang, we’ve had one glorious multi-course meal after another—at Cafe Lotus, at Casa Luna, at Café des Artistes and more, but nothing compares to our farewell banquet for the writers in the hills above town.
After a night of celebration for which I gratefully acknowledge the exploratory quest and connections of Joanna and Heather, here is my recipe for a Balinese feast:
A gorgeous, walled, private, hilltop residence in the Balinese style, with an open-air living room, wide lawn, views of the palm forests, rice fields and rushing Ayun River far below, and a totally modern and separate many-windowed kitchen building with its own views of the lush surround.
An attractive, generous, and extremely talented private chef by the name of Komang Adisubrata.
Ultra-fresh local ingredients like bitter gourd and organic red rice.
An à la minute menu composed of the following dishes:
- Cassava Chips with Spicy Carrot Dip
- Bitter Gourd
- Pork with Palm Sugar
- Curried Tempeh
- Fresh Corn Fritters
- Fish Satay
- Balinese Style Fish Satay with Young Coconut
- Honey Grilled Chicken
- White Rice
- Organic Red Rice
- Beers, sodas, a delicious red wine.
Scintillating dinner conversation peppered with provocative questions, confessional outbursts, outrageous opinions, marvelously embellished tales of old conquests, and rapacious repartee.
—Linda Watanabe McFerrin