|Ayam goreng penyet (smashed and fried chicken with crushed chilli paste)|
I don't even think you can talk to an Indonesian about food without mentioning, at least once, sambal. The chilli paste, which is usually made with fresh crushed chillies, cooked or uncooked, and mixed with various fragrant and rich ingredients is almost like kimchi for Korean. Eating without it will not be as exciting. Combined with penyet-style proteins (smashed and then fried), we are talking about great eating experience here.
Warung Bu Kris (literally transated to Mrs. Kris's Stall) is said to be the pioneer of this kind of menu in Surabaya, but now they have branched out to the big capital city. It is one restaurant spoken highly by many, and as an avid fan of sambal and ayam goreng (Indonesian-style fried chicken), I braced myself for the traffic jam and made my way there.
It is not literally a stall. It's quite a spacious restaurant with two-storey dining area. I was expecting it to be crowded in lunch time but it wasn't hard at all to find a table for two. The setting is simple but quite homey, with red and yellow cushioned chairs and wood-patterned tables.
The menu is quite extensive although every line emphasizes their specialty: smashed-and-fried proteins (chicken, beef, duck, ribs, seafood, etc) served with their sambal whose spicy level can be adjusted.
Preparing an umbrella before it rains, I picked es cao (iced grass jelly drink) to be the day's fire extinguisher, while the father opted for the really nice es sari dele (soy bean milk). Both were great and refreshing.
|Fore: es cao (IDR 6,500 - $0.6); back: es sari dele (IDR 7,000 - $0.7)|
I was starving when my ayam goreng penyet (Indonesian-style fried chicken served with spicy crushed chilli paste) arrived. The chicken was adequately portioned, it neither too big or too small. I had chosen 'spicy' level for my sambal, and it was rather fiery already. Or maybe my chilli tolerance has dropped down.
|Ayam goreng penyet (Indonesian-style fried chicken served with spicy crushed chilli paste) - IDR 16,000 ($1.5)|
The chicken and sambal were perfect together, especially with collaboration with warm rice. The bird was tender yet retaining some bouncy bites, it was also quite moist and nicely seasoned. Overall, it was very praise-worthy, but it fell short from my expectation. With so many good words about it, I was expecting 'amazing' or 'breathtakingly delicious'.
|Moist and tender chicken|
Our bowl of sayur asem and two big pieces of fried tofu and tempeh deserved an applause as well. Although the soup was slightly too sweet, it was light and helped toning down the heat well.
|Sayur asem (sour vegetables soup) - IDR 6,500 ($0.6)|
|Fried tofu and tempeh - ea IDR 3,000 ($0.3)|
The father's ayam bumbu rujak (fried chicken with rujak-based chilli sauce) wasn't the easiest food item to be taken photo of, but it was one rich and exquisite dish with finger-licking good sauce. It didn't come with the sambal but the flavorsome sour and spicy chilli sauce made up for it.
|Ayam bumbu rujak (fried chicken with rujak-based chilli sauce) - IDR 16,000 ($1.5)|
To sum up, it was really a very pleasant, typical Indonesian eating experience. Great fried chicken, fierce sambal with warm rice, fused with frequent sips of the soup and some bites of the fried tofu and tempeh, all eaten by hands instead of cutlery; this is exactly why I had missed Indonesian food so much.
I am sorry that it took me this long to post the first post in 2014! There were distractions and a few big hiccups in life, and to be honest I was losing my blogging and even eating mojo a bit.Or maybe I should say I am. Hopefully both, especially my appetite, come back soon and I can post as regular as usual.
And I hope 2014 has been treating you well so far!
Rating: 3.5/5 (Really worth the try)
Really nice sambal and fried chicken, service is quick and welcoming, price is reasonable, ambiance is clean, nice, and homey.
WARUNG BU KRIS
Jl. RS Fatmawati Raya 37 D
Cipete, South Jakarta 12420
Phone: (021) 7590 0802
Opening hours: 10 a.m. - 10 p.m.