Signature dish from the sea
When you’re heading eastward from Denpasar to the famous Tenganan and Candidasa villages in Karangasem regency, be sure to make a brief stop in Pesinggahan village in Klungkung regency to taste the coastal village’s traditional signature dish. Curiously, the name Pesinggahan itself literally means “stop by”.
Pesinggahan village is at the border of Klungkung and Karangasem, about 30 kilometers east of Denpasar and about 10 km west of Candidasa. It is close to the tourist attraction, Goa Lawah Temple.
Among the village’s many food stalls is Lesehan Sari Buana.
At the food stall, there is no menu on the table. The waiter will only ask how many portions you would like to order.
The stall only has one package of mouthwatering dishes, rice served with satay lilit (Balinese-style satay), pesan (steamed fish wrapped in banana leaves), fish satay, sambal matah (Balinese chili condiment), fried peanuts, a bowl of fish soup and vegetables.
Most of the dishes are made of one main ingredient: tuna fish. The satay lilit is ground tuna fish flavored with Balinese seasoning locally known as base genep and shredded coconut. The fish-and-spices paste is wrapped around bamboo skewers and then grilled.
The fish paste is also shaped into meatballs and then boiled with water seasoned with base genep to give you a bowl of fish soup.
The pesan, also known as pepes, is another tuna dish seasoned with the same base genep spices, wrapped in banana leaves, steamed and then grilled.
Two types of vegetables are available, either kalas or plecing kangkung. The kalas is boiled long beans with spicy yellow seasonings and fried onions on the top. Meanwhile, the plecing kangkung is water spinach and bean sprouts served with chili sauce topping.
“The food of Pesinggahan is delicious and special for me. That’s why I usually stop by when I pass the village,” said Made Arnawa, a Denpasar resident.
The whole package is only priced at Rp 16,000 (US$ 1.70). The food stall opens everyday from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m.
Luh Putu Ariadnyani, the woman who has run Lesehan Sari Buana for the past 14 years, said every day hundreds of people, locals and foreigners, came to the food stall. “We always maintain the quality of our dishes by using only fresh fish,” she said.
Another special feature of the Pesinggahan food stall is that you can dine lesehan-style, sitting on the floor, lounging in a bamboo bale. Tables and chairs are also available for those who are not comfortable with the lesehan style.
- Photos by Ni Komang Erviani