I am talking about the Garuda Business Class lounge. At the risk of seeming presumptuous, all you have to do is buy a Garuda business-class ticket to reap the rich rewards. And a feast awaits. Why else would I spend time there! As a self-confessed glutton who will travel to all corners Homecoming Dresses the globe for a luscious meal or an exotic delicacy, the lounge is the place for me. Over the past year, I have sampled wonderful Indonesian dishes here that I have never tasted before. They have subsequently starred on the Casa Luna and Indus restaurant menu. My greatest difficulty is concealing my excitement as I gaze at these newfound Indonesian specialities. I can become embarrassingly ebullient over a new culinary find and nowadays try to be mature Short Prom Dresses these things. Of course, I am not saying that I succeed. But my love for the Garuda lounge was well and truly sealed a few months ago, reaching new heights of adoration. I arrived just after midday, exactly when my gastric juices were begging for some sustenance. Aduh lapar, I thought to myself while I wheeled my bronze carry-bag into this nirvana terminal. The lounge was full of elegant business folk, male and female, in batik shirts, suits and pressed dresses. A few tourists where there in their casual best of worn, torn jeans and tee shirts. Some were reading or watching the news, some were belting away at laptops and the rest were hovering around the food or munching. The mood was serious. That's what happens in business-class I guess. I scanned the room and suddenly noticed a new addition to the culinary offerings. Standing alongside Plus Size Dresses buffet was an antique wooden table set with a number of rustic terracotta bain-maries manned by a number of neat young Indonesian women wearing white lace cutwork kebayas and sarongs. My attention was grabbed instantly. Ah, the seduction of spices. What lay before me was a nasi liwet banquet; a glistening array of side dishes and steamed rice that make up this Solo-based extravaganza. I oohed and ahhed like a small child, refraining from jumping up and down on the spot (hard to do in high heels!). I remember eating nasi liwet at the Darmawangsa Hotel many moons ago and marvelling at the romance of flavours that begged examination. And here I stood, with each little side dish set before me, winking at me seductively, secrets laid bare. I would now unravel the mystery. "Mau makan nasi liwet, Ibu [Would you like some nasi liwet, Mrs]?" I was asked by the polite server'. Yes please," I replied with a huge dose of enthusiasm. What is nasi liwet, I hear you ask? First of all, it is rice that is steamed in fresh coconut milk and aromatics, resulting in moist grains that hum with the elegant subtlety of salam leaves, Black Prom Dresses and nutty coconut. Served alongside is opor ayam, a delicate chicken curry scented with galangal and lime leaves; choko or green melon in coconut milk, tempeh (hands up who doesn't love tempeh) and half a tea-coloured boiled egg that has also been simmered in spices. The texture of the egg is an interesting mix of firm but grainy, tasty not spicy. What's not to love? Can you understand my excitement now? But wait, there's more and this is what threw me. They topped my rice with a slice of omelette, that had also been cooked in coconut milk and then... a spoonful of a luscious thick aromatic coconut cream. A passion statement of the coconut kind! There is something about this exotic nut that speaks volumes; of love, nurturing and tropical islands. Nasi liwet is a marriage made in heaven. Two dozen eggs later, I am still trying to master this amazing white paste and I am determined to perfect the rice. In the meantime, I will continue to arrive early at the airport but sadly, nasi liwet is only served during lunch hours. No more late-night flights for me. So some major decisions will have to be made in future. Zara or nasi liwet at Soekarno-Hatta! Janet DeNeefe 2010
The writer is the founder of the Casa Luna and Indus restaurants in Ubud, author of Fragrant Rice and creator of the Ubud Readers and Writers Festival.
Starting her career in 1988 by making kebaya, wedding Blue Prom Dresses and stage costumes, designer Anne Avantie recently introduced her ready-to-wear collection - putting her touch on old batik, or Lawasan.
"Lawasan" comes from Javanese term lawas, meaning old. It refers to the old batik she found during her visit to Solo in Central Java. Apparently, she had been planning to create a ready-to-wear collection for three years, but she had no idea what to make. The old batik was her answer.