Blora is a small town in Central Java, which stays quiet even on Sunday. Few months ago, my husband, Kiara and I visited Blora and I felt so hopeless. I thought we would not find something interesting here. If Pramoedya Ananta Toer was not born here and did not write any book about Blora, could we possibly hear about the town?
Luckily, on the second day, we visited Terawang Cave, which has some “not bad” sight inside and around. After exploring the cave, we were hungry. My husband wanted to taste a meal typical of Blora. He asked our driver for recommendation.
“You can try Blora satay or soto, Sir,” the driver answered.
Yes, I forgot. I had heard about soto blora and sate blora, before. But I never ate them. So, I thought it was a good idea to choose satay for lunch, and soto for dinner.
Then, the driver lead us to a warung that serves the Blora satay. Unfortunately, it was lunch time and the place was so crowded. My husband said that we would just order the satay and take it away to the hotel room.
And still, we had to wait about 30 minutes before the meal was ready. It’s normal, actually. Because, you know, the merchant needs to grill the meats for a while. Not to mention that long queue.
I love satay very much. But I prefer chicken satay. Unfortunately, the merchant did not prepare chicken satay that day. We did not know why. So, I ordered beef satay, rather than the meat of goat.
We were starving. We couldn’t hardly wait to eat this. So once we reached the hotel, we paid the travel driver and gave him a portion of sate blora as a bonus. Then, we ate the Blora satay in no time.
Generally, Blora satay looks like another satay. What makes it different is the wrapping. Normally, satay is just wrapped by banana leaf and rice paper. But Blora satay is wrapped by sheets of daun jati (teak leaves). There are plenty of teak forest in Blora, FYI. As we observed, they use the leaves for many other meals too, not just satay.
However, the main thing that differentiate Blora satay from others is, of course the taste. My first impression: the seasoning is deliciously strong, and the meats are tender. If you love the ordinary satay, you will love the Blora satay more.
Maybe, it is because of the process. Before it is baked, the meat is soaked in the seasoning of union, garlic, and coriander. Another thing, Blora satay is completed with opor dressing. The texture of the peanut sauce is so pure and thick too, like a sauce of gado-gado (mixed vegetables), if you know what I mean.
Months after our journey in Blora, suddenly I want to taste it again. Actually, there is a restaurant that serves Blora satay at Jalan Raya Jemur Sari, Surabaya. But I am not sure, is it as great as “the original” Blora satay, which is the tastiest satay I ever had so far? Or just as expensive as it?
– Photos by Brahm