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Monday, December 27, 2010

Warung Brazil at Kuta - Cheap Foods!!

Love it or Hate it, Kuta is still one of the most popular destination in Bali. And consequently, the prices there is sky rocket high. Well, not as pricey as Nusa Dua, but still most of the time you got to pay more than what you get. This is not true at Warung Brazil in Kuta :)

The first impression that you'll have when you see this place is probably: "God!". It can be "God, this place's hideous!" or "God, it's so old-fashioned comfy!" Either way, it's good enough to visit or at least stroll to. I came to this place on my official second-day-of-holiday. After a very disappointing moment in Kuta Beach, where my intention to swim was severely washed away by the high pile of trash. So off I go to have breakfast here.

A glass of milk for IDR 5k and Ham-Cheese-Onion-Garlic-Tomato Jaffle for IDR 8K

Don't expect a superb taste. It is pretty normal yet pretty decent :D. Pretty much according to its price. But quite ok, considered my budget was tight LOL. Surely visit this place again, unless I can find something nicer with the same price.

Update April 2011: See more affordable ( a.k.a cheap :p ) foods here. Totemo just undergo renovation, and it's great! Need to try the rest, though ;)

Monday, December 13, 2010

Galungan Dec 2010 Part 2: Food, Glorious Food...

After the flower business (which is a treat for the eye), I'm gonna take you to indulge the glorious food we had at Galungan (yes, a treat for the tummy!).

A day before Galungan is called Penampahan Galungan, which the Balinese menampah/butchered and prepared the meat (usually pig's). As our family is quite small we don't need to really butcher a whole pig, we just buy the meat at the market.
Among other dish, the things that was prepared are some fried pork cutlet, lindung (small fresh water eel), fried chicken eggs, boiled duck eggs (serve whole as a part of the offering), urutan (balinese sausage), and calon (javanese: dendeng ragi, which is coconut shred and mince meat fried together). We also made crispy fried shallot and the all time must: Sambal Matah.

We also make some lawar and other vegetable dish. However for offering Mum opt to dye the lawar with red dye instead of using fresh blood. Again, this is because there's just so few of us at home. In various communities, especially ones with large families, Galungan is a very big event and every one take part of it. This rings the bell especially in villages, but not really so in the city area. A bit too bad actually, tradition may sounds painfully hellish but it is always good to have a special day for get-together.

Thankfully the food preparation ends well, which means the offering was made in proper amount and not ending up in our tummy. This is of course due to Mum's strict gaze every time we pass the table (sorry mum hehehehe). And our reward for being such good children is the ultimate Mum's specialty: smoked fish in sambal matah, accompanied with raw (round) eggplant. Yummy yum yum!!! Next up: The Praying trip :)

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Galungan Dec 2010 Part 1: Flower Power!

My long awaited holiday is over.. Sigh... But I still need to tell you how it goes ;).

As you have probably read in my previous Galungan and Kuningan post, Galungan is a celebration of the Dharma (good) victory against Adharma (not good). Balinese Hindu celebrate it with various offerings and prayers, and all family (commonly) gathered to prepare the big day: the feast, the offering, and so on. It's almost like Christmas or Thanksgiving (but minus the presents and the turkeys) or Ied-ul Fitri (minus the fasting - thank God!).

For women, the preparation starts with preparing the offerings, which consists of flowers, fruits, dainty cakes, and various types of offering complementer made from young coconut frond (which is a piece of art itself). Making the frond arrangement is quite a task for me, but not shopping ;)

As I reside in Denpasar, the best place to shop all the flowers we need is at Pasar (market) Badung. This market is currently undergo renovation, but it still fabulously fantastic to visit especially days berfore a Bali Holy Day. The flowers are just everywhere! The sack that you see on the right below is flower petals of Rose Balsam or Bunga Pacah. Can't believe how many flowers needed for one sack, and there they trade it by tons. They also have shredded pandan leaves, all by sacks.

Also selling lotus flowers, hydrangea, ylang ylang, and sweet smelling champaka. You are welcome to buy it, even just for giving scent in your room. The price is about IDR 1000 per champaka, but it may fluctuates during (or near) Holy days.

Pasar Badung also have various food stalls, fruit stalls, anything you need for your praying and also daily cooking. Imagine going to farm market and multiply it to 10, that would sum it up, and it's only the seller on the outside of the building (Pasar Badung also have a solid building for Balinese Clothes seller, souvenirs and such). The surrounding, however, was well maintained as "old town" complex.

Back to business, I took a shot of what one of the offering complementer will be (Canangs). The case is made from young coconut frond, and it was filled with flowers, pandan leaves, sugar cane, banana, and stuff I'm not sure what it called in English (or even in Indonesia!). It's rich in meaning, rich in color, rich in everything. Balinese did a fine work for God ;).

Shopping for Galungan at Pasar Badung is really fun. I enjoy the sight of the old buildings and shops around, which combine really well with the noise and the sweet flower smell. What can I say, I'm a sensualist hehehe... If you haven't been there, go, and enjoy yourself :). Gajah Mada Town Festival is also a great way to get to know more about this fabulous place, and it is usually held on December 28-30. Who said shopping in traditional places is a nuisance?

Friday, December 3, 2010

On my way to Holiday...

Stacks of e-mail to be send, long list of things that needs to be done, and only 3 more hours to deadline.
No, this is not a Christmas or year end scenario, this is a Galungan scenario :)

Thanks to the perfectly-positioned holiday, we're gonna have a long 5 days holiday for this Galungan. A 5 day holiday that I have been so looking forward to. Not only it going to give me time to get lost in Bali (okay, technically to roam around Bali, but I'll probably gonna literally get lost anyway LOL), but also because I just love Balinese holiday. The music, the smell, the color, the people, the fabulous looking guys in Udeng. It's just fantastic.

Perhaps it's because I'm still retaining my tourist point of view, as my friends and colleague already launch tirade of how depressing it can be: the money, the effort, the time spend in almost no civilization area (or so they say), and of course, the in-laws. But come what may, I still think it's wonderful. It's like back to the old era where Bali was untouched by the globalization, and I secretly think God is also happier in those Holy days.

Now, back to my e-mails and work lists and strenuous days at the office. 3 more hours to blissful holiday, better get moving now ;)

photos taken from :

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Ga Bisa Makan di Warteg, ya Makan Ati aja...

Saat menikmati makan siang hari ini di warung langganan saya jadi kepikiran, kapan lagi ya saya bisa makan makan siang seenak ini cuma dengan selembar uang 10ribuan dan selembar uang 2 ribuan? Bukan apa-apa, pemerintah DKI Jakarta dengan "brilian"nya berencana mengenakan pajak 10% pada warteg. Otomatis harga makanannya pasti naik kan. Trus rakyat kecil mau makan apa? Selain makan ati tentunya...

Resminya seh: "usaha dengan omzet 60 juta keatas wajib kena pajak." Oke, ini wajar dan bisa dimengerti. Tapi yang harus juga dimengerti adalah warteg dan makanan informal lainnya itu menu rakyat kecil, terjangkau dan bisa diakses dengan mudah. Walau harga warteg sudah ditekan serendah mungkin, masih banyak rakyat Indonesia yang ga sanggup makan di warteg. Percaya deh, been there done that. Apalagi kalau dinaikin harganya karena pajak.

1. Apa segitu perlunya untuk nambah penghasilan daerah sampai bela-belain ngejar pajak dari kaum kecil?
2. Kalau pertanyaan 1 jawabannya "ya", atau "demi keadilan", apa yang pembayar pajak gede sudah dikejar-kejar juga?
3. Kalau bisa dengan pedenya menjawab "ya" di pertanyaan 2, maka saya ingin bertanya: sudah dipikirkan belum dampak "kebijakan" ini???

Pajak itu harus, dan perlu. Namun jadinya ga masuk akal kalau rakyat kecil ditekan untuk membayar pajak sementara yang mampu bebas berkeliaran. Ga masuk akal sedemikian banyak orang terkena dampak kebijakan ini secara signifikan dan pemerintah (atau kaum elit) tutup mata. Apalagi karena mereka tidak punya pilihan lain. Kalau ga makan warteg, mau makan apa mereka? Ini bukan "keadilan", ini "kejahatan".

Mungkin wacana ini akan cuma wacana, dan akan hilang seiring dengan tekanan rakyat. Namun adanya wacana ini saja tetap menyakitkan, dan merupakan bentuk ketidakpekaan pemerintah terhadap nasib kaum kecil. Pernah ga sih mereka naik bus berjubel-jubel, atau cuma punya uang pas untuk sampai kampus dan balik? Pernah ga sih ngerasain cuma sanggup beli nasi dan tempe di warteg? Kalau yang buat kebijakan cuma orang-orang (sok) elit dan ga pernah mau ngeliat kebawah, ya apa jadinya. Indonesia bukan hanya Mall-mall besar ber-AC dengan orang-orang yang wangi, bukan juga mobil-mobil mewah dengan kursi yang empuk. Warteg adalah cerminan Indonesia yang sebenarnya. Jadi saya mohon bapak-bapak dan ibu-ibu pemerintah, para kaum elit, please come to your sense! Inget lho, orang yang lapar adalah orang yang marah. Jangan biarkan api anarki muncul cuma karena pajak yang tak seberapa.

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