Deputy Assistant for Regional Marketing of the Ministry of Tourism Dessy Ruhati stated here on Monday, Batam is a culinary haven due to its ethnic richness that lends varied tastes to the cuisine.
"This culinary wealth had led to the origination of the idea to hold this event `The Best of Street Food,` this coming March. This aims to not only introduce the various types of food but to also attract visitors to Batam," she explained.
These countries` chefs will serve some of their local favorites, such as Indonesia`s Ayam Penyet, or fried chicken with chili; Martabak Manis, or sweet pancakes; Gado-Gado, or salad with peanuts sauce; and Ikan Bakar, or grilled fish.
On the other hand, Malaysia will focus on cuisines from Penang, which is a state in the northwest coast of Peninsular Malaysia.
Since Penang is inhabited by Malays, Chinese, and Indians, its culinary arts is based on each ethnic community. However, at this festival, the chefs will serve Fried Kway Teow, Prawn Mee, and Ais Kacang (Ice Kachang).
In order to represent Thailand, the Thai chefs will serve some of Thai`s favorites, such as Pandan Chicken; Thai Hor Fun, or rice noodles cooked in gravy; and Vietnamese Roll.
These three countries share a few similarities in terms of the types of food they have to offer.
For instance, for the Thai Hor Fun, Penang also has a dish called Char Hor Fun. In Indonesia, this type of dish is called Kwetiau Siram, or white noodles in gravy.
Each country has its own adaption of this dish that is said to have originated in Shahe, Guangzhou, China.
Batam is viewed as a culinary haven since it is populated by different ethnics that bring various cuisines that no other area will have.
It has also been known for its international festivals, including the Batam International Fashion and Food Festival (BIFF) and Batam International Culture Carnival (BICC).
Indonesia`s Ministry of Tourism is striving to attract visitors from outside the country as well as Indonesians to promote and introduce not only Batam but also the cuisines.
"Hopefully, the event would be a grand success, so it can be held again next year. We fully support this type of event because it always attracts new visitors," Deputy for Marketing of the Ministry of Tourism Rizky Handayani stated.
This event is expected to be spectacular due to the diverse culinary experience that it will offer in Batam View, Batam, Riau Islands, this coming Mar 2.
Reporting by Jannatun Naim, Safira Noor Haliza
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