Wednesday, 5 October 2011

A Feast at Rice Field and Sedap Sari Bakery, Rangkasbitung

Owning a rice field is sure handy for some occasions..
The feast food

..especially for a big family gathering like this.

The grandpa and his brothers apparently have a rice field in Rangkas. I don't often come here, I've only been here twice in my life. There was a big family gathering coming up, and since the rice field has a shack nearby, it was chosen to be the gathering venue.

When I arrived, there are heaps of food served in the shack. Almost all of them are makanan kampung or village food in English. Simple, but homey food. And thank God the temperature is just below 40, I seriously can't stand being outdoor at Rangkas's average temperature of 43 degrees.

Much much delicious food are abundant, varying from fried chicken and pepes tahu (steamed tofu in banana leaves) to fresh lalapan (raw vegetables) and karedok (Indo style salad).

I was really interested in these fried fish. I don't often see a pile of fried fish like this. They're almost like snapper, but smaller. Great crunchiness, but a tad oily for my liking.

Fried fish

This one I didn't try. But I can tell you that it's stir fried melinjo with chilli. Melinjo is a very popular plant in Indonesia, whose seeds and fruits (the red parts) are used in sayur asem (Indonesian sour veggie soup), and the seed themselves can be made into emping (melinjo crackers, taste a bit bitter).

Stir fried melinjo with chilli

The creamy chicken curry is awesome. It's creamy resulting from the use of coconut milk, and the full-of-spices smell is mouthwatering. The chicken is very soft and tender, detached easily from the bones. Perfect with warm rice.

Chicken curry

This one's a big hit between the parents and the elders. Not that popular between the youngsters. It's semur jengkol or dogfruit sweet stew. Jengkol or dogfruit is a popular type of bean in Indonesia. Despite its strong smell (reeking smell for me), it's often cooked as satay, curry, or sweet stew like this. I never like this bean although my mom make the stew quite often at home. Guaranteed smelly breath for 3 days is what you're in if you consume these beans.

Stink aside, these beans have firm texture, make them enjoyable to eat. The stew's gravy, which is made with spices like nutmeg, cinnamon, and coconut milk, helps a lot; being very tasty and perfectly seasoned. I didn't eat this, I asked the mother how the dish tasted.

Jengkol (dogfruit) sweet stew; fried vermicelli in the background

I'm sorry I didn't take my first helping photo. My first plate looked very appetizing I can't help but to demolish it. The second helping however, only consists of two dishes; the duck egg omelets and empal. The omelets are nicely fluffy, perfectly seasoned and very moreish.

For empal, it's also a beef dish like rendang, but different marinade is used and no gravy is involved. The beef is slow-cooked until it's tender. Unfortunately, this empal is seriously hard to chew. It's very flavorsome though, the marinade's great. And I have to say that the chilli paste (not pictured) made by one of the aunt is evil. It's the first time I can't finish my chilli.

Clockwise L-R; my second helping, duck egg omelets, empal

A glass of cold young coconut juice is a perfect concoction to offset the sun's ridiculous heat.

Young coconut juice

Although there were not enough seats for everyone, we were actually having a good time, enjoying the great village food while chatting or gossiping the latest infotainment's news or just enjoying the view of the rice field, which is located next to the shack.

The shack; family's rice field

Beside the rice field, the shack is surrounded by a large garden, providing fresh coconuts from the trees, rambutan (in season), and papayas.

Rambutan tree
Papaya tree

Cassava and bananas are heaps too. In the end of the meal, the parents were busy dividing the cassava and bananas into plastic bags, to be brought home.

Chickens; cassava and banana piles

If only Rangkas weren't that hot, I'd come have lunch at the shack more often.

Sedap Sari bakery

Plain white bread; fresh-from-the-oven breads

What's a trip to Rangkas without visiting  my fav bakery there? I've posted about this bakery in my post before.

The thing that I always love from the bakery is the always-warm breads. Seriously everytime I visit, the breads are all warm and very appealing. My all time favourite chocolate-banana breads are delivered to the table not long after my arriving, there's still apparent steam condensing the plastics.

The bread is ridiculously soft, like pillow. And of course chocolate-banana combination can't be wrong, right?

Freshly baked chocolate-banana breads

The minced chicken breads also arrived steaming, being wonderfully soft as well. The minced chicken filling is generously given and tasty.

Freshly baked minced chicken breads

Beside the breads, the bakery also sells various traditional snacks. But the warm breads are what I was there for.

Snacks and traditional cakes display

The chocolate donuts are also awesome. It's surprising because I thought they only make great breads. Although the donuts are not warm on the display, they're soft and not overly sweet.


Again, if Rangkas weren't that hot, I'll come visit more often.



Jl. KH Mansyur III No. 10 L
Rangkasbitung, Banten
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  1. But that's proper family food! Nothing fancy, but wholesome and lovingly-prepared food from whatever's in season or cheap at the markets. No fanfare or plush surrounds, but just the people that matter for company =)

  2. @ Rita: exactly! for some reasons, the rice field and the garden are 'fancier' than a luxurious restaurant for a family gathering!

  3. wow the food looks amazing!
    traditional home cooked food always beats restaurant food! never been to indonesia but i really want to :)


  4. @ DK: thanks! :D
    i agree! and do come visit Indo, despite the high humidity and annoying air pollution, we got some best food here! :)

  5. You went to Rangkas? Must be real hot there, I wasn't in the slightest bit happy about the sun's hyper activity these days, thank God rain pour down more frequently lately...

    Ramblings aside, THE BREADS! THE FISHES! THE CURRY! Give me!! xD

  6. @Rheza: indeed pe!! over 40 degrees there!! yeah, I hope it'll rain more. the breads you should try. serious awesomeness :D


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