WHERE’S THE PORK?

The turkey bacon looked appetizing to me when I chanced upon it one day while grocery-shopping at Cold Storage at Centerpoint. I thought it’d make a healthier alternative to the bacon strips my flat mate was very fond of. She could finish one pack – of 12 strips I think – in one sitting! But my bacon-loving friend wasn’t elated about my little surprise when I presented it to her, exclaiming, “Liana! The essence of bacon is pork!” Touché! Her reaction reminded me of the conversation between Edward and Bella in Twilight when Bella asked Edward about how he felt about drinking animal blood and not the real thing. Edward said it wasn’t the same but it had to do. My friend was no Edward.

Meanwhile, another pork-loving friend was a little subtle. “It’d taste better with pork,” he said with a grin, as he took a huge bite of the foot-long Subway sandwich.

Pack it in Bali and savour it in Jakarta

 I don’t eat pork – I stopped more than two decades ago – but I don’t begrudge people who find happiness digging into plates of it. Conversely, they indulge me in my food fetish like, at one point, loaves of whole meal or whole wheat bread, Famous Amos cookies, Lays potato chips, dim sum and, currently, couscous and Starbucks drinks. They’d buy me my favourite foodstuff whenever they had a chance. I thought I’d return the favour when it came to their favourite pork dish.

In Bali, following the lead of my gal pal V who dropped by this warung, a small family-owned business that’s usually an outdoor restaurant. She had to get her secretary something that only a Balinese cook could do so well so we dropped by a babi guling warung. The expectant secretary requested for babi guling (roasted pork) and Pak Malen’s, which was on the way to the airport, is guaranteed the best in Bali.

Dine in or bungkus - trust Pak Malen for a good meal

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