Vegan Sushi, Satay and Four Poster Beds
Our first stop in Bali was Nusa Dua, home of many top end luxury hotels in the South of the Island and where you could actually be anywhere in the world and not realise you were in Bali if you didn’t step outside once in a while…
We were being fed lots of small but beautiful food at the Conrad, including Vegan Sushi so we ventured out onto the streets of Nusa Dua most nights to see what Indonesian vegan food might look like. Sadly, Nusa Dua is mainly full of touristy restaurants but we found a few that were OK even though we ate our food with a sneaking feeling that we were in a kind of strangely engineered environment.
Despite the weird surroundings, being served tempe on a little miniature BBQ at your table is a deeply enjoyable experience. The coals keep cooking the skewers, meaning your food stays hot and the caramelised crispy bits on the edges get even more caramelised and crispy. And as if this wasn’t delightful enough, you get a peanut satay sauce to dip them in. The best place we ate this was at Bumbu Bali in Nusa Dua, surrounded by a Balinese dance display which was beautiful but definitely put on for the visiting tourists (us).
Tempe satay is a serious contender for a place on my list of top ten of South East Asian foods, should I ever decide to complete one.
We also some tasty vegetable noodles and Cap Cay (pronounced Chap Chay) which is basically vegetables in a light gravy found all over Bali, usually containing chicken but can be veganised by asking for the meat to be removed and requesting that they don’t use chicken stock, which has seemed to cause no problems so far. This is either because it’s really no problem or because they are just agreeing and ignoring you. There is an element of taking your chances but having tasted it, I’m fairly confident that there’s no meat stock used in the dishes we ate.
After a week of residing in a suite that was bigger the the first flat we owned and lazing around on poolside four poster beds I can wholeheartedly say that my inner vegan princess had been very well catered for and I was ready to move on to see a bit of normal life and meet some local people.
Even though there a bit of me that is pretty well suited to living in luxury and having other people do everything for me, ultimately this is not a side of me that I want to indulge too much (not very sustainable on a budget and pretty high maintenance for me to upkeep, let alone whoever is on the receiving end).
Next stop the costal town of ‘Sanur’ where we booked a home stay and planned to hang about of the beach for a bit.