Traditional Main Dishes
To start with, hot and spicy is probably the best way to describe Minahasan dishes! Although not every dish is cooked with chili or "rica" ( /ree-châ/ in Minahasans dialect), you still have to be careful, unless you are used to hot spicy food.
There is also a local joke about Minahasans and their dishes, "they eat everything that has legs on earth, except humans and tables!" While Sundanese people (see Bandung on this website) are "famous" for their "leaves, mortar, and pestle". Minahasans have animal dishes that are uncommon to many other Indonesians or even to anyone else on our planet, such as fruit bat, paddy field (or forest) rat and dog (said to be not their own pet or someone else's pet)!
Minahasan dishes are basically cooked using many kinds of spices, such as basil leaves, garlic, ginger, lemon, lemongrass, lime leaves, shallots, spring onions, turmeric leaves and of course, chili!
Grilled Rat, a minahasan traditional food in Manado and surrounding
Common dishes in Manado and its neigbouring towns are Dabu-dabu ( /dâ-boo/ - (which is a kind of local pickle made of raw tomatoes, lime juice and green chili), fish cooked with cooking oil and other spices called Ikan Woku (/ee-khân wô-khoo/), Jantung Pisang (which is a banana heart or blossom that may contain pork and it is spicy), Nasi Jaha (rice grilled in a bamboo mixed with ginger and other spices), Nasi Kuning (steamed yellow rice with a boiled egg, beef and chili wrapped in coconut leaves), Nike (pronounced as /nee-khé/ which are fried "local anchovies" that only live in Tondano lake), Paniki (fruit bats cooked in coconut milk), vegetable dishes like Pangi ( /pâng-ee/ which is made of edible fern mixed with papaya flowers, chili and may contain pork), Ragey (pork satay), Tinutuan (Manado version of porridge, again may contain chili), and so on.
Usually Minahasans eat these dishes with plain steamed rice. Apart from steamed rice, Nasi Goreng or fried rice is also part of Indonesian’s customs, where locals may have the Indonesian style fried rice for breakfast, lunch or even dinner.
Photos of some of these dishes are displayed below.
As a big city in Indonesia, Manado also has a range of other Indonesian dishes, Asian food, and Western food. Local restaurants offer modern or traditional settings, indoor or outdoor settings, especially in highlands - taking advantage of the comfortable climate and Lesehan (sitting on rattan mats on the floor). There are also many international chain restaurants, such as A&W, KFC, Pizza Hut, and so on.
There is one typical Minahasan drink called Saguer, which is made up of palm tree fruits, known to local people as "pohon (tree) seho" or "akel". Minahasans usually drink it at almost all kinds of parties, such as birthdays, marriages, baptisms, and anniversaries.
Sometimes you can see local farmers making Saguer from their palm trees on your way to Rurukan Village from Tomohon bus/mikrolet terminal. They call this process of making the drink "Ba Tifar" or "Ba Ke’et.
If this palm tree fruit juice is fermented, it becomes an alcoholic drink. There is one well known brand among the Minahasans called "Cap Tikus" (which literarily means "Rat Brand"). Cap Tikus is relatively cheap and available in many warungs or shops. Other kinds of liquor are only available in bars and clubs, hotels, many up-market restaurants, cafes, and some stores, while beers are quite easy to get.
Apart from Minahasan drinks, you can still find other typical Indonesian drinks, such as avocado juice (which is milk that is made up of blended avocados and sometimes chocolate syrup or sauce).
Warung and Rumah Makan
Other than good-standard local restaurants, you will also find many local-style small street side "restaurants", called Warung or Rumah Makan/RM (direct translation: eating house). These are places where you will find the real prices of food for Manado or even the rest of Indonesia. They are very affordable to most Indonesians.
The difference between warungs and rumah makans is that warungs are never (or rarely) built on a permanent place, whereas rumah makans are built on a permanent basis. However, warung/RM cleanliness or hygiene really varies. Unless you are so used to these kinds of environments, you should carefully judge cleanliness before eating somewhere.
Please take notes that sometimes pictures make food looks delicious but you might not like the food, or the otherway around...
|Ikan (fish) Mujair Bakar Rica||Nike|
|Ikan (fish) Mujair Woku|
|Roy Imbar||23 Jul 2013|
|jenis/menu makanan masih ada lg yang kurang mis: gohu,nasijaha dll|