Tarakan: KFC Indonesia

Chains are chains because they are the same everywhere, right? Still interesting to see that there must be some differences due to cultures. Today my friend to me to KFC and what can I say: It was definitely not how I knew it.

Of course, the sign, the colour and even the typical smell where the same as everywhere else. First “funny“ (maybe uncommon is a better word) thing for me where the kerchiefs of the Muslim workers cause they were in KFC style as well, so part of their uniform. Makes sense in a country with a high percentage of Muslims living and working there.

The food was pretty much the same as everywhere else: Chicken wings, other chicken pieces and burgers (I’m sure they had a bigger selection and even a fish burger!). You can get fries but you need to ask for it. Normally they serve rice as everywhere and every time in Indonesia (or Asia?). Also, I saw some extras I hadn’t seen in a KFC before: soup, berkeder (a little potatoe patty), a sweet drink called Flush and for dessert pudding and a sundae. 

Our order came on a tray with real plates! Plates, in a fastfood restaurant! I couldn’t believe my eyes. 

So yeah as I said, the food looks as you expect it to look. The chicken piece with chocolate was also a special, can’t say if only here though. And it might look the same but…

  • the drink was soo sweet, I reckon it was syrup mixed with lemonade
  • the fries were sweet! Not with sugar but there was definitely no salt.
  • the chicken was spicy. I know my ability to handle spicy food is not the best but I didn’t remember spicy chicken pieces at KFC…

All in all it was of course still a good meal. For me it was really cool to see how a famous fast food chain adapts to a country’s culture and actually made me curious how it must be in other countries… Let me know if you know any examples! 

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Long Loreh: Mie Ayam Bakso

Oh what a welcome change! I’m spending my time here in my friend’s village. She has some ladies at home that cook for her, the family and some workers there. It’s great, I’m not complaining! But rice for breakfast, lunch and dinner every day… I guess you get used to it 😉 

One night though we went to eat in a Warung outside. First time in a week that I didn’t have rice in a meal.

Instead I had this: Mie Ayam Bakso; Noodles, Chicken and Meatballs. All came in a bowl of soup and was seriously good. Especially the little meatballs made me want to eat more, they’re really delicious. This is something I will always look forward to eat again, especially when I need a break from rice 😀 

Yogyakarta: Es Campur

Trying new things is part of travelling. In Australia most of the food I tried was something I knew and was just prepared in different ways. Here in Asia I’m actually trying new things. Apart from learning how many dishes you can combine with rice, I get to know some local drinks as well.

This one is called Es Campur. It’s really sweet, something that tasted like strawberry milk to me. Inside are little pieces of jelly, bread and fruit. Actually it’s really tasty but also super sweet so I couldn’t finish it. Probably won’t get it again but definitely worth the try. 

Yogyakarta: A day of authentic Indonesian food

I’m currently visiting my friend in Indonesia. After being shaken by an earthquake last night, we decided to start the day with something traditional. To be fair: You don’t really have a choice around here 😀 For breakfast we went in one of the close by Warungs and got Nasi Kuning which is yellow rice. Traditionally you eat it with chicken or pork and a spicy sauce. Since I can’t handle any spicyness I got some chicken in soy sauce with it and a nice fresh melon juice.

It was delicious, the rice didn’t taste any different than normal rice though. I guess they put some spices in to make it yellow but you don’t really taste that. Nevertheless it was a good and extremely filling breakfast. Of course there was still room for dessert… 🙂 

For lunch (it was far past 2pm) we went into a restaurant chain (I think it was called “SS“) and sat around one of these really low tables on the floor. We chose some food or better: we ordered everything that sounded nice to us. The result was a completely full table with food for only three people. 

There was so much food! I’m still full when I think about it. Grilled fish (one of the best I had in a while!), shrimps, squid, salads and of course rice. It was all so good but seriously, if you go to a restaurant like this, hold yourself back. Everything sounds delicious and so it is but it’s too easy to get too much. We couldn’t eat all, especially cause they also served some fruits before. 

What I really like about Indonesia are the juices. At the beginning I was a bit sceptical cause you have sort of two layers in your glass and need to stir. But when you think about it: All you get is mashed fruits with water so an actual juice, not something filtered and sweetened. The apple juice I had for lunch was great, tasted like real apples. 

Even though I didn’t need dinner, my friend brought some snacks home. I had to try them all and I need to say it’s not all my taste. 

BBQ Chips, I think we all know them. They are not made out of potato though but something called cassava which tasted pretty similar, just a bit crunchier. The sausages were definitely not a hit. I guess it’s hard to impress a German with that… The milk tea, typical in Thailand how I learned, is quite nice. Not as sweet as ice tea but still not a milk shake. The sandwiches were my favourite. The white one was filled with a cheese cream; eatable. The green one had a jam filling of a fruit I never heard of but it was great, would eat it again for sure! 

I was just about to post this blog entry when my friend came back with another new thing: Black beef kebab.

Apparently it’s a fruit that makes the bread black. Together with the beef, the salad and the sauce it was an amazing combination and the right thing to finish a day with. It was only a small kebab too, not a big one like I know it from home or Australia, so just perfect. 

So this is how my day ends, foodwise (can you say that…?). I’m really curious what Indonesia has to offer and even though I didn’t like everything I tried today, I’m gonna try new things that I can’t have anywhere else. Cause that’s travelling, right? 

Townsville: Ice Cream at Juliette’s 

After waking up with a sore throat, being on a bus for five hours and walking around in something around 30°C, I think it’s fair enough to get an ice cream.

New places, new flavours. Today I went for one scoop of White Chocolate and one Strawberry Lemon. The fruity one was more lemon than strawberry but very fresh and creamy. Same with the white chocolate; very fresh, not like a heavy ice cream that makes you full. I liked it a lot and it even had some white chocolate bits in it.

But yeah, Juliette’s didn’t make it easy to stay focused on ice cream. There is a variety of cakes and other pastries, coffees and shakes. So whenever you need a dessert, instead of going to The Coffee Club next door, sneak into this cafe and find your favourite. 

Apart from the one in the city, there is another shop right by the beach. I didn’t check their menue but they probably have the same stuff. That’s good: Spread the good ice cream. If I was staying longer in Townsville, I would probably be at Juliette’s every day…

Airlie Beach: Pretzel and Rich Salad

Oooh what a life! Being in the tropics, chilling by the lagoon during the day, going for a run by the water in the evening and finishing with a dinner that you’re looking forward to. I couldn’t remember the last time I had a pretzel and my salad got me quite excited as well.

First of all: Everything was on sale. Got a lettuce and coleslaw mix, cut some tomato and cucumber, added the leftover salad dressing from the hostel and topped it with bocconcini and ham. Oh so good! And the best thing is actually that you feel good after you eat it. Totally recommended, made me happy when I ate it.

Gladstone: Crispy Chicken

I visited a friend in Gladstone some days ago. He is working in a hostel there so I stopped on my way up the east coast to catch up. In the evening we cooked together with his colleague who had an amazing idea! 

As you know backpackers are not that creative when it comes to food and definitely not patient or willing to cook for ages. We had the time though and an empty kitchen as well. There was way too much bread and chicken in the hostel so my friend’s colleague made crispy chicken schnitzel with bread crumbs. 

We had potatoes and mushrooms with it. For me this was one of the fanciest dinners I had in a while (apart from eating out of course). Made me quite full which was good cause I went on a night bus afterwards. But yeah, this is how I learned how to make chicken schnitzel. Not that I didn’t know but I just never made it. Gonna keep that in mind.