Balinese cooking is all about balancing sweet, savoury, sour, and spicy. All recipes will usually contain these 4 elements and the trick is to find the right combination to bring out all the aromas. So what are ingredients used to bring out these “4S”?
- Sweet: Usually palm sugar, or palm sugar syrup (could be substituted with golden syrup or maple syrup)
- Savoury: Sea salt, soy sauce or shrimp paste
- Sour: Tamarind or kaffir lime
- Spicy: Chillies of various strengths
I found it really helpful to know that because it enables you to play with recipes, and easily find substitutes for ingredients you might not have in your pantry, as long as you know what their function is. So if I don’t have shrimp paste, I can always replace it with some soy sauce for example.
Try and spot the 4s’s in this recipe of green beans in coconut sauce! I like that one because it makes an original side dish, easy to replicate at home, with ingredients you can usually find at the supermarket. I never thought of pairing green beans with coconut milk.
Rujak is the first recipe we learned to make in this class. One of Indonesia’s most popular snacks, it is basically a fruit salad, with a sweet and sour sauce, mainly tamarind and chili. Of all the recipes we made that day, I think this one is the simplest to recreate at home, as it does not involve too many exotic ingredients, or a least those common enough that you can find them in a supermarket.
You can use any fruits you like for this, as long as they are crunchy. You can even mix some refreshing cucumber in the mix, as was the case in this salad. One fruit to avoid though is watermelon as it gives too much water to really work with this salad.
I can’t believe it has been almost a month already! Everything went so fast since the wedding! I am looking forward to sharing a few pictures with you and some of the dishes we had on the day. But as we are waiting for our (amazing) photographer to send us everything, I might as well start with one of the highlights of our honeymoon: our beautiful cooking class at Casa Luna Cooking School in Ubud.
For our honeymoon we spent 2 weeks in Bali were we had a great time relaxing and enjoying some time together just the two of us. Neither of us had ever been in Asia, so this was a big first for us. As we are both found of Thai and Vietnamese food, we were really looking forward to know more about Balinese cooking (ok, mostly me…). This class was everything I had hoped for.