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Interesting that they use Ketan Hitam (black rice) in a savoury dish, (and with sambal no less!). I think in Jakarta and most of Java it's mostly known to be used in, typically sweet, desserts (e.g. with glutinous rice, coconut milk sauce).


I hope you went on to finish that delicious looking breakfast! Thanks for introducing us to new concepts in eating - Love it!


the black rice looks more like a side dish than the rice itself, at 1st glance!

how true, i for one, have never really stepped on a paddy field myself. being a Malaysian and all ...


I love your blog!!!


Robyn, thanks for another fascinating story.
I've never experienced a rice harvest, but last July while visiting Miao and Dong artisans (indigo dyers, silversmiths, papermakers) in Guizhou and Guangxi provinces, we found ouselves tramping through villages where rice planting was in full swing-such an interesting process to watch.
Toraja looks sublime and the alang-alang are like scuptures on the landscape. They remind me of spirit houses in Papua New Guinea and grain storage structures I've seen in small isolated villages in Portugal.


What a great story and beautiful photos! Would you recommend visiting this area? I'm using your blog as inspiration to make my travel plans. :)


Beautiful... Simply beautiful!


Robyn, your story and Dave's photographs are beautiful! Thank you for coming and staying with us and our extended family. Mama Danny and Erni are so happy that you and Dave enjoyed their cooking.
I didn't know that you were still around the area...because last Saturday there was a Harvest Thanksgiving in Batutumonga near our house. Oh well, just come again!


Superb photographs... I thank you both for sharing the beauty of my homeland. I haven't been to Sulawesi.

Did you try Coto (Soto) Makassar?


Thank you very much for this wonderful post. I love the photos, the black rice seems so appetizing, I could almost smell its unique aroma.


Always a pleasure to read your blog.

The purple rice looks very much like the rice a friend bought for me recently. The label on the pack said "forbidden rice" it was purple (even colouring the pan with a purple hue) and had a nutty flavour. Unlike brown rice, it kept its shape even when cooked to a plump grain. Apparently very nutritious too!


Hi Ronny - northern Thais (or at least some hilltribe people) eat black rice as a savory as well. This is not glutinous, but regular black rice.

drfugawe - are you kidding? Of course we did. And went back for seconds!

J2Kfm-not many paddy fields left on the peninsula these days. You'll have to get yourself up to Kedah.

YIN - thanks!

Hi Linda - Papua is on our radar. And very interesting about Portugal. Must google. Thanks.

Lina - I definately would, but avoid the rainy season. If you have alot of time you can add on some time on the coast or on an island, at a beach. And it's worth getting a bit off the beaten path ... Toraja is very touristed (but still incredibly beautiful) and everyone seems to be fixated on attending a funeral or two but the
region has so much to offer. We'll have more posts coming up.

Vincent - thanks from the photographer!

Hi Dinny - thanks for having us. What a great time we had, thanks to all of you. Shoot, I forgot about the Thanksgiving. Next year, perhaps...

Hi Tuty - we didn't get a chance to try coto Makassar. But we did have some fanTAstic bubur Manado, and I'll be posting it. Yum.

tina - you're welcome! Thanks for reading.

Rich - where was the rice your friend gave you from? Yes, this rice cooked up plump but still had a nice bite to it. Delicious.


I want to know about Toraja coffee.

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I didn't start my day without eating rice,that is really the source of my energy.ahmm,.I'm so curious about the taste of that black rice and this also the first time I heard rice combined with some coconut..it seems so appetizing..anyway,I love your post!


_ts of [eatingclub] vancouver

Nice-looking breakfast! But, I just had to comment because that set of cutlery (spoon & fork) is the same exact one we had growing up. Currently, we only have a few pieces left as, for some reason, our father insisted on throwing them out! We managed to salvage some. We have even waxed poetical about that set of cutlery on our blog!

Here: http://www.eatingclubvancouver.com/2009/05/eggy-home-style-meal.html


Shirai - You read my mind. Just posted on coffee.

Seth - give the rice and coconut thing a try. It's delicious, especially supplemented with some spicy sambal. :-)

_ts - it is truly a small world!

Lady Macaron

Oh i would love to try that! the black/red rice is usually eaten for desserts there but oh i could not imagine eating it with sambal trassi! but im sure it tasted wonderful! I def have to put Toraja in my travel list. Thanks for a great photo of that rice combination!

Yum Asia

We had black rice in a rice pudding with coconut milk when we were in Indonesia and it was delicious...never knew it was eaten as a savoury dish either. We are curious as to what sort of 'bite' the rice had when cooked normally? was it more like the texture of brown rice?

Great blog btw!


gosh, where do i get this purple/black rice from ??????
i want some - is it possible to buy this in Manila ??

great blog and bonne appetite


Wow... Where did you stay in Tana Toraja? The view from your room is just breathtaking.


Mira - we stayed with friends who have a home there but there is a guest house along the same road, with the same view in Batutumonga. It's not a big place, believe me -- only one road. You can't miss it.

Account Deleted

Almost all varieties from oryza.sp can be planted and grow in Toraja. And believe it or not,the taste or the rice from paddy that being planted in Toraja is different from other region in Indonesia. I know it because my family from Toraja.


Yafeth - that's interesting, and I believe it, because palm sugar from various varieties of palm taste different depending on where the palm is grown. Terrior for rice and palm sugar, just like for wine.

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Sam Rice

Oh. So this is how black rice looks straight from the soil! Black rice is super healthy and I can see why it is. Plus, I like how the black rice was used for this recipe. usually, black rice is used for dessert dressings. but I like it as the main dish.

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