Saturday, 13 December 2008

The babi guling of Bali

Gosh, i have not done only postings since i came back from Bali. Work has been hell recently and sapped my strength for Writing. Thank god for Christmas coming soon. Anyway i finally found some inspiration to write, so might as well use it to let off steam.

This post is specifically about babi guling and not so much about Bali. Much has been said about babi guling. Its' in a lot of flogger's blog, Anthony Bourdain rave's about it ( If you recall, No reservations had a bit a bout this ) and it is even written in guide books. Babi Guling is essent
ially roast pig - whole. And it kinda looks like suckling pig only larger.

Now, though babi guling is every where, according to my guide, this is only for spec
ial occasions and not their daily food. Hmm, i wonder if the cholestrol level of the balinese will go bananas if they had this daily.

In search of good babi guling, you cannot just hope into any stall to try. The best so far as everyone says is really the best and it's worth the 1 hour journey to try Ubud's Ibu Oka babi guling. This gem of a place is SO unassuming, i cannot believe i almost passed it up for a cleaner place ( in search of a toilet ). I would have smacked myself.
This piggy place is next to the Ubud palace in the cross roads which on your far left is the Pasar Seni of Ubud. You can't miss this place with the piggy sign a queue of customers infront. Even Japanese tourist make their way here.

Once you are in, get a place to sit ( yes, you need to take out your sh
oes for the inside seating ) and pig will be served to you. You have very few choices. Babi Guling Special, Babi Guling with extra skin, just the babi only ( no rice ) but every thing is about babi. Now, how many times have i mentioned babi in this post.

Finally, my babi came. And it is served just like this. Pork stacked up, with some veg, and a piece of blood sausage, offal of some sorts and lots of chilli. Except for the blood sausage, offal every thing was excellent. I must say for those who fear pork smell- this has no smell. I am not sure what the marinade was but it was sublime. And the pork was not tough. Apparently this place serves up 400 plates per day. To balance this rather meaty dish, a large serving of greens supplements it. Not bad as well goes well with the pork.

Top all this off with a bottle of Teh Botol. I have become addicted to this Indonesian drink. :P. It's just called Teh botol but it is really good on an extremely hot day in Bali. I took this rather than asking for plain water. Was a bit suss about their water source - as NO ONE was drinking that in the shop.

Picture courtesy of Jakarta Post.

Anyway, this made the rather hot ubud trip worth it. My thanks to my guide Johnny who requested us to try this! If you are ever in Ubud, do really really try this.

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