Tag Archives: table manners

How to eat like an Indonesian

The best way to enjoy Indonesian food: with family and friends, especially on Jalan Malioboro, Jogjakarta (btw sorry for showing my feet- more on that in a later post)

The best way to enjoy Indonesian food: with family and friends, especially on Jalan Malioboro, Jogjakarta (btw sorry for showing my feet- more on that in a later post)

There is a saying in Indonesia that if you haven’t eaten rice throughout the day, then you haven’t eaten at all. Rice is the bread and butter of every Indonesians diet and this is the main reason I titled my blog ‘don’t forget the rice’. Almost every meal will be served with rice, even for breakfast and sometimes even for dessert.

There are 4 different words in Indonesian for rice but the one your probably most familiar with is Nasi. This translates into English as cooked rice. The main rice that is available on every menu is of the white variety. I mean you can even order it nicely wrapped up like a burger at McDonald’s.

How you eat your rice is up to you. Indonesians eat their meals with a spoon and a fork or with their right hand. There are lots of variables as to when it is appropriate to use either, but as a foreigner I suggest you stick with the spoon and fork method to begin with. From an outsider it might look easy eating sans utensils but it takes a lot of practice to make it look effortless and dignified.

Eating with your hand is surprisingly satisfying, especially when you have had a long day.

Eating with your hand is surprisingly satisfying, especially when you have had a long day. (p.s. First GIF I ever made…)

When eating your….say, nasi goreng (fried rice) the fork is in your left hand as you would normally and the spoon in your right as your main utensil. The spoon will play the role of knife and spoon, very versatile little fellow and he has probably played knifey-spoony before.

And if you want to impress/flatter your host and/or your Indonesian friends, once you have finished your meal place your fork and spoon as shown in the picture below.

.....................Selamat makan

…………………Selamat makan

Memories of holidays past is always about the food for me. What are your favourite Indonesian food memories? Have you ever tried Durian? I have and I didn’t like it, but Isan doesnt like vegemite so we are even.

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