On My Plate: Chef Susanto – The Street Food Lover (FoodieS, Mar 2016)

Meeting up with chefs can be a lot of fun. Talking about what they cook every day and what are the challenges in their line of duty can be inspirational, but what about if the chefs are talking about how foodie they are in real life?

Chef Susanto (1)

Chef Susanto – Grand Hyatt Jakarta’s Chef de Cuisine of Grand Café, was all into street food and other forms of comfort food. Despite him growing up with big hotels since his first gig at Menara Peninsula and to The Ritz-Carlton Mega Kuningan Jakarta, The Monarch Dubai, Century Park Hotel Jakarta, and now at Grand Hyatt Jakarta; he does not forget at all about his foodie roots.

Chef Susanto is well-versed with hidden street food around Jakarta and other cities, as well as explaining about why are these certain hawkers that he chooses have distinctive advantages than the rest.

At the end of the day, his choice rests upon the smoky chicken satay – the most beloved of night street food and commonly found in many corners of neighborhoods across Indonesia.

“The best part came from the thigh – which is naturally the richest but also meaty part of the chicken, and it has to come also with the fat! Grill it right and have it your way with the peanut sauce. Nothing beats that!”, proudly he tells us all about how he glorifies this beautiful national dish.

While soto Betawi comes next after the satay, he also mentions other places where he would love to spend time at and apparently some of them are iconic.

“Ragusa’s ice cream is enjoyable, albeit the flavors feel very classic. However, what I am lamenting most is the fact that Tan Goei has been closed forever”, he explains.

Yes, it was a sad moment as well for me personally but I was lucky to visit it one time last year before it closes indefinitely.

As the sunlight wanes, our conversation moves on to cheerier topic once more and this time, it’s all about mie ayam, nasi goreng, soto, and so on.

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Featured in FOODIES Mar 2016 edition

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