It was sometimes a little difficult being a vegetarian in Bali. The odd prawn would rear its head in ‘vegetarian’ meals, and there was often a distinctive meaty flavour in some dishes. That being said, in the majority of restaurants, I had some lovely vegetarian meals.
Nasi Goreng is the Balinese national dish which is, essentially, fried rice. This is can be bought in many different guises all over the island from street vendors to high-end restaurants. The basic recipe doesn’t include tofu, but I usually add tofu to make it more of a substantial and rounded meal.
I have a habit of making far too much rice than required and Nasi Goreng is a great way to use up any leftovers.
Ingredients (serves 2)
Leftover cooked rice (about 2 mugs full – or about 200g of uncooked rice)
1 banana shallot
3 cloves of garlic
1 red chilli (sliced)
1 inch of ginger
Kecap manis (sweet soy sauce) or ordinary soy sauce
1tsp sugar (only use if using ordinary soy sauce)
Handful of mushrooms (optional)
Sesame seed oil
1 pack of pre-smoked tofu
50g chopped kale
Peel and finely slice the carrot, shallot and garlic and fry in plenty of sesame seed oil in a wok or frying pan. After a few minutes, add the chilli, ginger, finely sliced mushrooms, a tablespoon kecap mais (or soy sauce – along with sugar), kale and cubed smoked tofu. Fry on a hot heat for further five minutes before adding the pre-cooked rice. If the mixture is a bit dry, add more sesame seed oil. Once everything is cooked through and the rice is piping hot, squeeze some lime juice on top and eat immediately.