Are you an adventurous eater while you’re on holiday? If you are ready for some fabulous flavors and a bit of spice you’ll love the local dishes on Gili Trawangan. Originating from various islands around the archipelago, there are lots of different tastes to try out. Here are our top 5 Indonesian dishes to try while you’re on Gili Trawangan.
1. Nasi Goreng
Nasi Goreng, or fried rice, is arguably the most famous Indonesian food. It’s a staple for locals and travelers alike for a few good reasons. First of all it’s delicious, secondly, it can be made with just about anything, and thirdly, it’s as cheap as chips. You can’t really go wrong with nasi goreng so make sure you try a couple of different variations while you’re staying at Villa Almarik.
Another staple for Indonesians is satay. These chunks of meat cooked over hot coals can be found in kitchens and markets all over Gili T. In Lombok and the Gilis satay is usually made from chicken, beef, or seafood. In Hindu Bali you’ll find more pork, but as Lombok and the Gilis are predominantly Muslim, so no pork. A few sticks of satay make an excellent snack and add in some rice or ketupat (a type of rice dumpling steamed in banana leaves), and you have a whole meal.
If you are vegetarian or vegan, gado-gado is usually a good option. This dish is simply steamed vegetables, tofu, tempeh, sometimes egg, and peanut sauce. It’s a bit like a cooked salad, which sounds plain, but it’s actually incredibly tasty. The peanut sauce can be made spicy or mild and very smooth or with a little crunch. This is a fresh, light, and healthy meal on just about every menu.
4. Nasi Campur
Simply meaning ‘mixed rice’ nasi campur is a bit of everything on one plate. Always served with rice, nasi campur usually comes with meat or fish, vegetables, egg, peanuts and tofu or tempeh. The idea is to get a little of each and mix it together with the rice. If you like to bring the heat, add some spicy sambal to the mix as the locals do.
You are more likely to find lalapan in the markets or at roadside stands than in restaurants. This is a dish of fried fish, chicken, or duck served with raw vegetables like cabbage, cucumber and lettuce. Often tempeh, tofu, and eggplant are fried up and served as well. Sambal is essential with this dish and can be very, very spicy. It’s almost as if the veggies are just a way to transport massed of sambal from the plate to your mouth.
Are you ready to taste some of these delicious dishes? The restaurant at Villa Almarik serves a selection of local dishes and international cuisine as well. Don’t miss out on the culinary culture of Indonesia while you’re on Gili Trawangan.