Balinese Bacon

In Bali, you are sure to find great food, and in Balinese cuisine there is perhaps one dish more than others that gets the pulses racing: Babi Guling!

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On my first ever visit to Bali in 2013, I immediately noticed a rather large suckling pig that was roasting on a spit in the Ubud marketplace. It was the first time I had seen such a thing and I was fascinated by it. I don’t like cruelty to animals, but I have eaten pork back home, so I didn’t see why it should be any different in Bali.

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The suckling pig in Bali just tastes so mouth-wateringly good! So hot, so fresh, and it is usually marinated or simmered in certain spices and condiments, but I didn’t ask which ones – maybe galangal or sambal? Whatever it was, it made this crispy Balinese bacon taste all the more heavenly!

Babi Guling
Babi Guling

Obviously with Indonesia being a predominantly Muslim nation, you won’t see babi guling in many places in the archipelago. That’s why babi guling is known as a Balinese delicacy, where of course the locals are Hindu, not Muslim. Although in Sumatra, some people also eat various forms of suckling pig – however I doubt it is as tasty as the Balinese version!

The finished article!
The finished article!

I found that in Bali, babi guling is almost always served with lawar and white rice, and this goes very well with the warm meat. You can enjoy the dish with an ice cold bottle of Bintang from a roadside warung, or go for something a little more pricey in well-known restaurants. One thing is for sure, though: babi guling is served all over Bali and, along with Bebek Betutu (roasted duck), it is known as one of the specialities of the island!

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6 thoughts on “Balinese Bacon

    1. I don’t know where to eat babi guling in Singapore, apart from maybe specific Indonesian chains or stalls at hawkers, but anyway the authentic stuff from Bali is much nicer – and it’s only a 2hr flight away! 😉

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  1. it is certainly one of the spiciest things you’ll get to taste in bali. though it is flavorful, i usually opt for the crispy fried duck, which is also a balinese specialty.

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