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The feast before the wedding…

As some of you know, my brother got married over the weekend. We have had loads of visitors, mainly from Indonesia for the big event. The past few days I have eaten so much food that could probably feed a whole army, maybe more.

Day 1, we all went to hurricanes, 24 of us – just family. We all rocked up at the Hurricanes in Bondi Beach – a place I haven’t visited for such a long time ever since the Darling Harbour branch opened. As much I love going to Bondi, parking is a nightmare. However, that day, four cars all made it to Bondi safely to enjoy the feast.

We ordered about 14 racks of full pork ribs – yes, that’s right, you heard me, 14! I was going to take a photo of all the 14 plates of full rack ribs on the table, unfortunately, they all came at different times, and everyone was hungry and before I could say wait, they were all digging in!

This place really doesn’t require any introduction. It has been around for such a long time, it is a must try for those who has never been. We take all our visitors here, and they even ask to go back. Hurricanes are famous for their ribs, pork, beef or lamb. Believe it or not, I have only tried the pork ribs!

The ribs that night I thought was a little on the ‘lean’ side. It wasn’t as meaty as my last visit. However, the sauce, is still simply outstanding! I love the smoky, charcoal flavour and even though the ribs were on the ‘lean’ side, it was still tender, and succulent. I was definitely in pork ribs heaven – ooo how I have missed you pork ribs! It was absolutely satisfying!

The Mediterranean Salad is something I get occasionally, served with kalamata olives, feta cheese, capsicum and their Mediterranean dressing. It’s deliciously refreshing, the feta cheese is soft and cheesy, a great addition to the salad.

Another salad I do like is the char-grilled chicken salad, served with honey soaked walnuts and honey vinaigrette dressing. The char-grilled chicken I thought was a little on the tough and dry side. The honey soaked walnuts, however, were just to die for! Dad and I were fighting for these delicious, crunchy, chewy, walnuts – I will need to buy a jar of these!

It is still one of the best ribs I have had. If you are not a huge fan of ribs, they do have steaks, seafood, and burgers. Not a lot of options for Vegetarians though, a veggie burger and a vegetarian platter.

We didn’t have dessert at Hurricanes, my cousin, W, planted the idea of deep fried mars bars in our heads. I have not had one in such a long time that I too couldn’t get the thought out of my head!

So we went on a hunt, and saw this outside one of the seafood stores ‘world famous deep fried mars bars’. I remember when I first heard of these, I HAD to have one, so made my brother drive me. I can’t believe ‘The Mother’ has never had one before!

For those who haven’t eaten a deep fried mars bar, it is just an ordinary mars bars which is lightly battered, then deep fried and then sprinkled with sugar.

The batter was beautifully light, crispy and sealed the chocolate so none of it oozed out. That first bitte is truly magical – a lovely mix of savoury and sweet. The mars bar doesn’t melt but the inside, the caramel melts and it’s deliciously chewy like a marshmallow. It is sickly sweet, I felt like my arteries were about to burst and cholesterol sky rocket but it was good! Unfortunately, I couldn’t finish a whole deep fried mars bar on my own. ‘The Mother’ loved it, and managed to finish one!

Day 2: the night before my baby bro’s big day, we had a feast at my parents (in Indonesian it’s called ‘syukuran’) and believe me when I say it was a feast! Check out the photo below.

Meet pigsy, poor pig – mum didn’t make this, we bought it from our local Chinese bbq place in Eastwood. There is an old wife’s tale that if you eat the pig’s tail you will find a partner to marry. Apparently, at my ‘syukuran’ F ate the pig’s tail and three years later, he got married! We made my sister-in-law’s brother eat it, as they want him to get married.

Back to piggy – the suckling pig was incredible! Delicious, thin and crispy skin with a slitter of fat. The meat itself was tender and succulent, I couldn’t help but get a generous serving of this on my plate, it was THAT good! But then again, I am a sucker for pork! Here is what happened to piggy after it was cut and chopped! It was scrumptiously good. Please note the below is NOT what I had on my plate! I am not that greedy!

Lemper ayam – glutinous chicken was as good as those from Indonesia. My mother’s friend made these, and they were superb. The rice was gooey, and the chicken boiled, sweet and a little on the salty nice. The flavours of sweet and salty was just perfect.

Perkedel – potato croquette, which consist of potatoes, spam, and deep fried. This is one of my weakness, I love perkedel, especially when they are warm. Unfortunately mum didn’t make these, her perkedel tastes SO much better! I will make them one day so I can post recipe up.

Nasi kuning an Indonesian rice dish, in a cone called tumpeng and is eaten during special events. The rice had a nice coconut and turmeric flavouring. It was tasty, especially eaten with perkedel – talk about carb overload!

The fried noodles – for long life and prosperity – were delicious. The noodles were tender and the chicken, prawns, beef were a great complement.

Traditional Indonesian soup – sop merah. It is basically a tomato-based soup with any meat you want, in this case, we used sausages, spam, chicken and corned beef plus potatoes, celery, carrots, onions and garlic. I like my sop merah a little on the sour side, however, not many people do, so this was a little on the sweet side. The soup burst with flavours, especially the combination of all the meat. I grew up with this soup when I was a child, so absolutely love it! Again, a must make one day, especially in winter.

Sambal goreng kentang – spicy potato crisps. A very spicy side-dish or snack made from potatoes, mixed with onion, garlic, beef and prawns. Can also be made with chicken liver but this one is beef and prawns. It was delectably spicy, enough that it didn’t burn your mouth.

My favourite, mum’s beef rendang. Fantastic as always – tender, succulent, juicy beef with a kick of spiciness.

Bakso goreng – deep fried pork balls, which were purchased from Pinanggsia Noodle Restaurant in Kingsford was a hit! It was gone within minutes. They were crispy, meaty, and frigging awesome! I really could have eaten three on my own. Unfortunately, I didn’t take a photo of this, it was a HIT!

Last but not least, chicken wings marinated in honey and soy sauce. The chicken wings were succulent and too easy to eat and to stop at just one.

It really isn’t an Indonesian wedding or get together without the famous tehbotol, jasmine tea. This is one of my favourite drinks, it’s SOOOO refreshing! I do prefer to drink it out of a bottle though, the box is just not the same.

Of course there were wine and beers, we ate and drank the night away. I can’t believe that it was three years ago that I had my own syukuran, and now it’s my baby bros!! I love family gatherings, and weddings – so much food and love by all!

Hurricanes Bar and Grill

GA’s rating: 7.5 / 10

130 Roscoe Street

Bondi, 2026

Ph: +61 2 9130 7101

Hurricane's Grill on Urbanspoon

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Glorious food for afternoon / high tea with fantastic friends!

Everyone loves high tea, regardless if you are male or female. R, J, F and I all love high tea, and thought we would replicate all the delicious goodness on our own. I don’t mean we all make the pastries, sweets, and scones on all our own? No no – that’s just way too much effort! I am lazy and need to be in the ‘mood’ to bake – well baking is my way of procrastination! We wanted a high tea that’s somewhat different to your traditional high tea. Of course there will be the traditional scones, croissants and sweets but we (I should say, I) wanted some Indonesian snacks.

It was held at R’s place (read her review of the high tea here) and we were all given specific tasks to bring but it was pretty much whatever you want to eat, buy. J had the tasks of bringing savoury pastries, F sweet pastries, R, sandwiches, drinks and fruits, and I, Indonesian snacks (sweets and savoury).

I bought all my Indonesian snacks at restaurant padang (read review here) and I wanted to buy everything that I saw but I knew that my eyes were bigger than my stomach! For savoury snacks, I bought the traditional risoles, kroket and pastel kari.

For sweet snacks, I had to buy, durian mochi (yes they were absolutely divine, hint of durian so it wasn’t too smelly!), klepon (delicious round coconut sweets with palm sugar inside that burst into your mouth once you bite it), pineapple nastar (delightful pineapple round tarts), and banana coconut sweets. Yes, I was craving all of it!

Here’s what it looks like plated up next to J’s pastries – mini croissants, Japanese chocolate chips, and red bean chewy donuts.

J went to three different bakeries in TST and bought more than we could eat! It was great though – it’s always better to have more than not enough! Bottom left: I loved these sausage donut wrap, and Japanese corn chewy donuts. Bottom right: Look at all those delicious cookies! Top left: sponge chocolate cake in a shape of a sandwich and top right: R’s grilled bacon wrapped pineapple drizzled with maple syrup.

It’s not high tea without scones, cakes and sweet pastries! Here are the cranberry scones, custard filled pastries, fruit pastries and chestnut napoleon – my my I was in dessert / sugar heaven!

It took us a good 30 mins to plate it up and to make it all ‘pretty’. By ‘us’, I meant J and R, I just stood there perusing at what I can eat first! Then another 30 mins before we all finished taking photos – I was ravenous by the end of it and was dying to eat all the delicious goodness!

It was a relaxing way to spend an afternoon with great friends! We had a great time catching up, talking, laughing and well… being us!

Thanks R for hosting a great afternoon – great food, great game and most importantly, great company!

Indonesian feast @ Mums

Prior to coming to Sydney, I have kindly asked mum if she could make some of my favourite Indonesian dishes, one being sate ayam! You can never get good sate ayam unless I go back to Indonesia or at mums. So one weekend, we organized a get together with friends and family and mum made some of our favourite meals including sate ayam, beef rendang, wontons, spring rolls, bakso goreng and nasi kunning!

Let’s start with the sate ayam, chicken sate. Mum and dad specifically made these the night before, well, they put all the chicken on the stick and on the day we put them on the bbq with charcoal so you get that charcoal smelling flavour. The chicken sate was tender, succulent and absolutely fantastic! It truly did hit the spot! Dad made about 140 sates, I know for a fact, that my friend J, ate 18 sticks! My brother, F, ate about the same, I think I only ate 10! Disappointing but I was seriously stuffed!

The peanut sauce accompanied with the sate ayam was delicious!

Nasi kuning – Indonesian rich dish, rice cooked with coconut milk and turmeric. I love mum’s nasi kuning – I have tried making this dish but every single time, FAIL! She has given me the recipe and I have tried but something is always missing. The nasi kuning was full of flavour and the aroma…. Absolutely fantastic!

Deep fried wontons and spring rolls, I didn’t have too many of these, I really wanted to leave room for all the other fantastic dishes.

Mum’s famous beef rendang – she definitely made this with lots and lots of love! It was just wonderful! I know how long it takes to make the beef rendang, it was incredibly tender, full of flavour and had a hint of chili which was just fantastic! No one does beef rendang like mum that’s for sure!

Bakso goreng, deep fried pork balls. We bought these, the day before from an Indonesian restaurant in Kingsford, Pinanggsia. I absolutely love their bakso goreng. Mum was going to make her special bakso goreng but ran out of time, so bought some – which was just as good! They were HUGE, hence she cut them in halves.

And who can forget all the condiments that goes with the food? Two types of Sambal goreng; sambal goreng with tempeh, sambal goreng with fried fish, and coconut with peanuts. All can be eaten on its own or with the nasi kunning.

We had dessert – it wasn’t your typical Indonesian dessert, but still it was good. Chocolate mud cake, J and N bought this and I have to say, it was fantastic! It was light and rich, but not sickly rich. It was a perfect way to end the meal.

The Indonesian feast was just phenomenal, it was exactly what I wanted and craved for. It truly hit the spot! I could have eaten the sate and rendang with nasi kuning day in and day out! I really do miss the family / friends get together!

Durian

Durian, distinctive for its large size, unique odour and acquired taste. You either love it or you don’t! I personally LOVE it and cannot get enough!

During my last trip to Indonesia, I made sure I indulged and ate as much as durian as I can! It is virtually impossible to get good durian in Sydney and have not had it as frequently as I would like here in Hong Kong! I’m forever craving this fruit and thinking about it (thanks to my dear friends who keeps talking about it!)

The best ever durian I have had was in Bangkok – it would have to be a good 15 – 20 years ago, when the whole family went for a trip to Bangkok. I think dad and I had a durian EACH! That’s right, we both had ONE WHOLE DURIAN each! Needless to say – we were both sick the next day but truly satisfied our durian cravings!

I’ve tried durian pancakes, durian and sago desserts, durian and jelly drinks, durian shakes but my favourite would have to be, fresh durian with durian ice cream. I can’t believe that I have only discovered this last year when I went back to Indonesia! Where have I been? And how come my parents / relatives have not introduced me to this prior? It’s not like I don’t go back home every year!!!

So basically:

  • you buy fresh durian

  • durian ice cream

  • mix them together and voila

you have the best dessert in the world!!

If only the shops are open right now, I would go and get some durian and durian ice cream!

How do you like to eat your durian? I do like it straight up on its own also!

I was told that there is fried durian – I have yet to try this, however, will it top durian with durian ice cream?

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