Here are 8 Local Dishes to Eat When Visiting Bali

The island of Bali is immensely popular for its natural beauty and dramatic landscape. It is one among the 6,000 populated islands in the Indonesian Archipelago where you find few of the best diversified natural attractions and culture. Balinese are extremely cultural people and food is a part of their strong culture. Local street food dishes selling in Bali hold some delicacy in its taste and uniqueness in preparation. In case you are in Bali and want to try out the local street food dishes, stick to this food guide. Over here is a list of the best local street food dishes to try in the paradise Island of Bali.

Things to know (and appreciate):

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  • In Indonesia, there are more than 5,000 traditional recipes available and they form a part of the local street foods.
  • Indonesian cuisines are greatly influenced by the Indian, Chinese and Dutch because of colonial history.
  • In Indonesia across all the Island including Bali, you find a small chilly used in local foods and that is the hottest.
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  • Soto, the most famous traditional Indonesian food has over seventeen varieties.
  • Balinese people love eating rice and they start enjoying various rice dishes right from breakfast.
  • You can taste a special coffee produced from animal poop in Bali and it’s famous because of the uniqueness in its preparation.
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    Let’s dive in:

    1. Satay
    Sate or Satay is a popular local street food dish in Bali and widely available across the island. It has a melt in mouth taste and served with spicy homemade sauce. The Satay available is Bali is unique as it’s prepared with minced meat of beef, chicken, fish, pork, etc. and then marinated with grated coconut, coconut milk and variety of local spices. It is then wrapped around bamboo, sugar cane or lemongrass sticks and slow-cooked over charcoal. Sometimes it is served with ketupat (rice cakes). Enjoy eating this dish while you explore the island as the taste is divine.

    2. Nasi Goreng
    Nasi Goreng is not only one of the popular local street foods in Bali, but it’s also the national rice dish of Indonesia. Nasi Goreng Platter is available in any local food stall and even included in the restaurant’s menu. This is basically Indonesian fried rice with the uniqueness lies in its preparation and plating. A special variety of rice is used to prepare this dish. The rice is first pre-steamed and then mixed with vegetables, meat, chicken, beef and seafood. A special variety of home-made soy sauce is used while preparing this dish. The plating usually takes place with the rice in the centre, topped with a half-fried egg. Two chicken or meat skewers, carrot pickle, shrimp krupuk crackers and salad are served along.

    3. Nasi Jinggo
    Nasi Jinggo is a popular Balinese food available across every main street in Bali. This is basically rice with vegetables and condiments wrapped together inside a banana leaf. This is an on-the-go meal and sometimes side dish like fish, beef, chicken, seafood, or eggs are also packed along with the wrapping. It is not only tasty but fits within your budget. You cannot miss this local street food so give it a try.

    4. Bebek
    Bebek is a traditional Balinese food and prepared in a unique way. At first, the whole chicken or duck stuffed is with local spices and then wrapped in a banana leaf. After that, it is enveloped tight in banana trunk bark and slowly cooked over charcoal for at least six to seven hours. The meat becomes tender, juicy, and it’s served along with rice and vegetables.

    5. Babi Guling
    This is something exclusive in Bali, the whole stuffed pig roast. This dish is extremely popular among the locals and equally among tourists. A special kind of stuffing using traditional spices, vegetables, cassava leaves, etc. is used while preparing this dish. The stuffed Pig is slow-cooked over charcoal by rolling it over on both the side until the meat gets tender and juicy. There are several restaurants in Bali specialized in preparing this famous food but you also find it at many local street food stalls, so go for it.

    6. Nasi Campur
    Nasi Campur is a local Bali favorite dish which is basically mixed the rice. The dish is plain and simple yet extremely popular as its nutritious. It consists of a small portion of white steamed rice served along with vegetables, fish and meat all prepared using local spices. This is also a popular local dish and widely available across the streets in Bali.

    7. Jimbaran Seafood
    Jimbaran is a small seaside village in Bali and a famous tourist spot too. It is rare for anyone in Bali to miss the opportunity to taste freshly caught grilled seafood which is a specialty for the food stalls at Jimbaran. Over here you find fresh seafood ranging from shrimp, clams, crabs, calamari, lobsters, etc. marinated in a unique local sauce and then grilled over coconut husk. You can choose the seafood you want and even the homemade sambal (local sauce) of your choice typically used during grilling.

    8. Gado-Gado
    Gado-Gado is local street food in Bali and a vegetarian specialty. It is basically a vegetable salad dipped in a homemade peanut sauce. A wide variety of vegetables are used in its preparation ranging from spinach, potato, corn, bean sprouts, cucumber, etc. The homemade peanut sauce is the secret to this dish for its rich and unique taste.

    Final Thoughts
    A culinary tour is important to understand the cultural heritage of a place. The food hunt in Bali is a large expedition and the local street food dishes are extremely popular among tourists. You find street food stalls in all tourist’s places spread across the island. Therefore, enjoy the food along with the Island’s natural beauty while you are at Bali.

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