LAKSA (English Version)

The same picture is used for the English version , as I only ordered two and the looks wee the same , so no other choice .

This is LAKSA , Bogor's Laksa , not Malay's , not Thai's . As you may know , Laksa is not solely available in Indonesia . Several countries in South East Asia has also their own versions of this food . It's actually the type of food born from a a combination of Malay and Chinese culture . Therefore , it is no wonder Laksa becomes typically food of people in Soutt East Asia continent , especially Indonesia , Malaysia and Singapore in which the population consist of both ethnics .

Each version of Laksa has its own characteristic , even in Indonesia there are several types of Laksa i.e. Palembang's , Betawi's . However the one I have been longing for is the Bogor's . Yes , of course , spending 36 years of my life in Bogor , I can consider myself a Bogorian and have been accustomed with the city's type of food . It was back from the early time of my living in the city when my mother introduced me to the food brought by a peddler .

The peddler used to bring two big container on his shoulder containing the ingredients of Laksa , the firebox (it's not a modern stove) and firewood . In the past , Laksa in Bogor was cooked using firewood and it resulted on the smelled of smoke Laksa . This may be the character of Bogor's Laksa . The ingredients brought by the peddler usually bean sprout , oncom , tofu , boiled eggs , basil  (called kemangi in Bogor) leaves , white vermicelli and some others . In the container , there was also a crock of coconut oil concoction sauce . Can you imagine the weight of the containers on the shoulder ? they were quite big and heavy .

However the one I , finally found last week was not sold by a peddler . The Laksa was now sold on one counter in SKI food centre (see - From Tajur (Bogor) with .. BAGS). It was now cooked by a modern stove causing the characteristic of the smoke smelled disappeared . However the other things were still the same . The savory taste of the coconut oil sauce , A slight sweetness, the softness of the tofu and vermicelli were similar to the one I had enjoyed in my childhood and eventually the laksa itself was really nice (at least for me) . Furthermore the smell of the basil/Kemangi leaves allured our appetite (me and my wife) The Laksa brought us to the good old days of Bogor . It was the closest Laksa to the past version we ever had .

The Laksa was again accompanied by its compatriot from the past era that still survived under the pressure from modern type of foods and junk foods that have flooded Bogor i,e, Cingcau Ice . They were quite a nice couples to enjoy .

Both types of food are now very rare in Bogor . Only few persons still try to keep selling this but since the taste of both are very traditional , it has difficulties to attract a younger generation of Bogor people. Several places in Bogor offer a new version of Laksa but the taste is often far away from the Laksa from the past era . I have tried several other version in some city / countries but it didn;t taste as Bogor's Laksa .

Now , there is no more peddler who brings the containers anymore in Bogor and Laksa seems hiding somewhere . It's likely someday it will completely disappear from Bogor . Quite a pity but it's a nature of everything on the earth , everybody , everything must be gone someday and replaced by a new one . So , perhaps someday I should accept another version of Laksa in Bogor , at least it will still be Laksa . I will try !
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About Anton Ardyanto

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