One of the things that makes our guests stay on board Coralia Liveaboard as well as at Papua Explorers Eco Resort memorable is the food that we serve. There is nothing more comforting to know that after a satisfying dive, there is a warm, healthy and hearty meal waiting for you. A happy tummy makes a happy diver. Over the years, our guests have accumulated certain favorites from our dishes. So we took the liberty of asking our guests which dishes, beverages and snacks were their favorites and compiled them for you. So when it is your time to come to our place, you might want to keep an eye out for these delicacies!
Our Top 15 Coralia Liveaboard Food Favorites
In no particular order, here are the top fifteen favorites:
You will find this typical traditional dish all over Indonesia. It comes in a variety of forms depending on the specialty and local ingredients of the area. We normally serve Soto Ayam which is chicken soup with yellow broth, shredded chicken meat, vegetables (cabbage), rice vermicelli (bihun), chopped celery leaves, golden fried shallots, potato fries, shrimp crackers and sambal (chilis – more on this later). But sometimes we also serve other soto such as Coto Makassar, which is beef soto from Makassar town (on the island of Sulawesi) with thicker broth seasoned with ground peanuts and spices.
This dish is a favorite amongst vegetarians as it is basically a rich salad of boiled, blanched or steamed vegetables (potatoes, longbeans, bean sprouts, spinach, chayote, bitter gourd, corn and cabbage) with tofu, tempeh and hard-boiled eggs (optional), all mixed in peanut sauce dressing, sometimes also topped with crackers and sprinkles of fried shallots. The term Gado-Gado literally means “mix-mix” and is considered one of the top national dishes of Indonesia.
3. Ikan Bakar
Ikan Bakar means grilled fish. We normally source our pelagic fish from local fishermen to ensure freshness and sustainability. The fish is usually marinated with a mixture of pastes made of spices, applied with a brush during grilling and then served with sambal kecap, sambal rica-rica or sambal dabu-dabu as dipping sauce or condiment and slices of lemon and cucumber as garnishing.
4. Nasi Goreng
Nasi means rice and goreng means fried, so it translates to fried rice. Indonesian fried rice is usually cooked by stir frying pre-cooked rice in a small amount of cooking oil or margarine, spiced with sweet soy sauce, shallot, garlic, ground shrimp paste, tamarind and chilli and accompanied by other ingredients, particularly egg, chicken and prawns. There are many variations to nasi goreng, depending on preferences, for instance vegetarian nasi goreng, salted fish nasi goreng, sea food nasi goreng, and others.
5. Tumis Sayur
Tumis Sayur means stir fried vegetables. There are many variations to this too, but the most favorites are tumis kangkung (stir fried water spinach), tumis daun singkong (stir fried cassava leaves), tumis sayur pakis (stir fried fern veggies) and other exotic vegetable combinations such as unripe jackfruit, papaya leaves, banana flower and papaya flower.
In Indonesia, we call congee or porridge ‘bubur’, and it is a favorite Indonesian breakfast food, also on Coralia Liveaboard. There are two types of bubur: the sweet variety and the savory one. The sweet variety is usually bubur ketan hitam (black glutinous rice) and bubur kacang hijau (green mung beans). Both are served with coconut milk and palm sugar. The savory variety is usually bubur ayam which is rice congee served with shredded chicken meat and some condiments. Usually, we would serve these bubur during breakfast only.
Every night, there would be hot sop on the menu. Sop is Indonesian for soup, and these hot soups give comfort to rumbling tummies after a long day of diving. Our favorites are pumpkin soup, clear vegetable soup, tom yam soup, mushroom cream soup, asparagus soup, amongst others.
8. Cheese/Vegetable Spring Rolls
Nobody could get enough of spring rolls! Whether we fill them with cheese or vegetables, they are very quick to disappear from our buffet table!
Once you visit Indonesia, you simply cannot escape sambal from any eating experience. It is not a dish in itself, but a hot, spicy condiment for dishes. Sambal is Indonesian chili paste or sauce made from chili peppers with secondary ingredients such as tomatoes, shallots, shrimp paste, garlic, ginger, lime juice and others. For our guests, we serve the watered-down version of sambal! If you want the more authentic experience, you might want to visit the staff kitchen 😉
10. Mango Float
Mango Float is a dessert and another Coralia Liveaboard food favorite. Bambang, our local chef from Sorong, introduced it. It is homemade ice cream, in layers with sliced fresh mangoes and biscuits. Its cold sweetness combined with the tartness from fresh mangoes is most satisfying after a hot meal. Another favorite dessert would be Lontar, which is like an East Indonesian version of custard pie.
11. Homemade Breads
In a remote island such as ours, it is so divine to have freshly baked breads every morning. Whether they be plain bread, wheat bread, sourdough, baguette and even gluten free bread! Not easy to find them, especially in Sorong bakeries.
12. Kopi Senang
We serve freshly brewed coffee with locally sourced coffee beans from Indonesia. One of the guests favorites is freshly brewed ground coffee from Sorong called Kopi Senang. We also offer expresso and cappuccino with manta foam!
13. Tropical Fruits
Guests have expressed how juicy and naturally sweet the tropical fruits are in Indonesia. Therefore it is no wonder they are always a favorite. For some who don’t know our tropical fruits, eating them becomes a culinary discovery & adventure on its own! Have you tried salak (snake skin fruit), manggis (mangosteen), markisa (passionfruit), rambutan (hairy fruit), and buah naga (dragon fruit)?
14. Fresh Fruit Juices & Smoothies
Naturally the fruit juices and smoothies are equally delightful. Accordingly , we make them with fresh tropical fruits mentioned above.
15. Last but not least, Joe’s Donuts!
People can’t seem to get enough of Joe’s doughnuts. Whether on Coralia Liveaboard or at Papua Explorers, this guilty pleasure is always sought after! Not sure what spell he puts in them, but don’t blame us if you gain a kilo or two! 😀
That’s it! Those are the top fifteen Coralia Liveaboard food favorites. We hope you’ll join us on a Coralia cruise one day, so that you can taste for yourself. You can find Coralia’s cruise schedule here.