Preserve and Promote Indonesian Cuisine
Nasi uduk Betawi. (Shutterstock/File)
Besides being a multicultural cauldron, Jakarta is also a culinary melting pot that is home to a variety of cuisines from across the archipelago and beyond – from Sumatra, Sulawesi and East Indonesia to Japan, Korea, China, Pakistan and Italy. However, its original cuisine from Betawi folks, who are this city’s real natives. Here are five eateries offering Betawi food to visit with your family:
1. Rumah Baba
Rumah Baba at Cipete.(Good Indonesian Food/File)
This Cipete-based eatery sports a unique 1970s Betawi-style interior. Its menu consists of dishes that all Betawi food enthusiasts will go ape over, such as lontong sayur (rice cakes with vegetables), soto Betawi (Betawi beef soup) and gado-gado (vegetable salad and rice cakes in peanut sauce). The cosy ambience at Rumah Baba will make you feel at home as well. The only downside is the limited parking, which can only fit up to three cars.
Jl. Cipete Raya No. 7A, Fatmawati, South Jakarta
T: 021 769 9205
Open daily from 11a.m.-10p.m.
2. Soto Betawi H. Ma'ruf
Soto Betawi H. Ma'ruf.(Good Indonesian Food/File)
Its beef satay with savory yellow sauce comes highly recommended while the laksa Betawi (Betawi spicy noodle soup) is also worth a try. Your taste buds and tummy will be satisfied after a meal at Soto Betawi H. Ma’ruf – mainly due to its age-old recipe that uses coconut oil as flavoring.
Jl. Gondangdia Lama No. 36A, Central Jakarta
Open daily from 10a.m.-9p.m.
(Read also: Top Soto Betawi picks you shouldn't miss)
3. Nasi Uduk dan Ayam Goreng Gang Buni
Sambal tumis udang petai (stir-fried shrimp with chili sauce and bitter beans) from Nasi Uduk dan Ayam Goreng Gang Buni.(Good Indonesian Food/File)
It has to be said that this particular Betawi dish is one of the most popular of its kind. You can find a nasi uduk (rice cooked in coconut milk with side dishes) seller everywhere you go. Found in Mangga Besar, Nasi Uduk dan Ayam Goreng Gang Buni also offers other Betawi delicacies, including semur jengkol (dogfruit stew), sayur asem (vegetables in tamarind soup), sambal tumis udang petai (stir-fried shrimp with chili sauce and bitter beans), tempe goreng (fried tempeh), ketupat (rice wrapped in a palm leaf) and bacang (stuffed glutinous rice wrapped in a banana leaf).
Jl. Mangga Besar I, No. 42C, RT 05/RW 05, West Jakarta
T: 0838 7575 7515
Open daily from 6a.m.-10p.m., except Monday from 4:30p.m.-9:30p.m.
4. Soto Kaki Sapi Mencos H. Sarnadi
Soto Betawi Mencos H. Sarnadi.(Good Indonesian Food/File)
Having been in business for the last 30 years, Soto Kaki Sapi Mencos H. Sarnadi has gone from a pushcart to having its own building. Its namesake’s son has inherited the shop that has been operating in the Percetakan Negara area since 1994. Despite its cramped dining space, the food here is quality – most notably its signature soto kaki sapi (beef trotters soup) in coconut milk with a dash of lime. If you are not into nibbling on a cow’s foot, then you can substitute it with beef. Prepare yourself for a long line if you come here during lunchtime.
Jl. Percetakan Negara No. 2C, Central Jakarta
Open daily from 10a.m.-10p.m.
5. Warung Betawi H. Muhayar
Pecak gurame (fish in a creamy sauce) at Warung Betawi H. Muhayar.(Good Indonesian Food/File)
It may have limited parking space and no air conditioning, but Warung Betawi H. Muhayar’s menu will make your visit worth it. One dish to try is its pecak gurame (fish in a creamy sauce) dusted with lime and topped with shallots and red chili. Add a portion of sayur asem for a perfect refreshing lunch, accompanied by a glass of sweet iced tea. (asw)
Jl. Margasatwa No. 8, Pasar Minggu, South Jakarta
T: 021 781 3945
Open daily from 9a.m.-9p.m.
Explore more Indonesian cuisine here.
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Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not reflect the official stance of The Jakarta Post.