Adventures in Jakarta, Grocery Shopping

This morning I had a special treat! My hubby went to the grocery store with me. I know, may not seem like a big deal but it’s nice to have someone with me as I do not like grocery shopping in Jakarta.  I know, but I love food and love to cook right? Yes, and when we were at home I loved going to the grocery store! I get excited just thinking about going back home and being able to go grocery shopping at HEB. But shopping here is certainly interesting, to say the least. So I figured I would share with you some of my grocery shopping experience and the fun, and weird finds here in Jakarta.

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Last week I shared with you how I meal planned for the week. Because I meal plan, I only go to the store once a week. The biggest reason I want to make sure I only have to go once a week is because of the traffic. That’s why for odds and ends and to get milk after we run out I use HappyFresh.  Since I only go once I week, I shop at Grand Lucky in SCBD. I have found that Grand Lucky by far has the best selection of everything you need in one place when it’s in stock. Yes, everything is not in stock all the time, like cilantro, a herb they use in tons of dishes here was completely sold out two hours after the store was open Some would compare Grand Lucky to Walmart, but it is far from it. You know, there are cashiers at every station, it’s clean, there aren’t people roaming around in their house slippers and pajamas…well, you get the point. The selection makes shopping there easy so I don’t have to go to multiple stores, but the best part is seeing things you would probably never see back at home!

 

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Check out the size of that prawn!

 

This morning we were checking out the seafood section, and there was a stingray! I just love how there is a big selection of so many different types of seafood. Check out this huge cumi (squid) that we saw! I think Aaron was thinking calamari, ha!

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I would have to say one of the most interesting things I have seen are the whole chickens. Yes, we get whole chickens at home, but usually, they don’t have the face and feet on them and still looking at you! I think this even shocked the kids some the first time we saw it.

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But there are some cool advantages too! Since we have been here, we have been able to try so many different types of fruit that we never had at home. Check out this selection here. You can see dukuh, rose apples, malang apples, and starfruit. But it’s not uncommon for us to have rambutan, mangosteen, sapodilla, salak, passion fruit, all colors of dragon fruit, soursop,  and more!

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It’s funny though. Aaron and I had an interesting conversation about how shopping here has opened our eyes even more to try new things. Before coming here, I had never thought about trying durian or jackfruit. I had only heard of rambutan in the movie Eat, Pray Love but never saw it in the stores back at home. But it’s been interesting how on our trips back home we have seen more and more of these items pop up in our local supermarket. So it made me ask him, did HEB carry things like jackfruit and rambutan before and we just never noticed it or are they popular back home now? Well I know for sure I would have seen a jackfruit, they aren’t small, and they stand out. But the past few years I have certainly been reading more about people at home eating jackfruit more often.

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Dominic’s favorite aisle at the store is the noodle aisle. We typically think of ramen as a poor college student meal. While it’s a meal that most people eat cause it’s affordable, there are so many different types! A favorite in our house is the mie goreng with a fried egg on top and loads of sambal. Mie goreng is fried noodles and a very common street food here in Indonesia. But look, a whole aisle dedicated to packaged noodles!

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Another aisle that always fascinates me is the number of condiments and marinades! I mean who ever knew there were so may different types of soy sauces?  This is a very tiny section of what they have in store.

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Here in Indonesia, they use kecap, which is made from a black soybean and makes a very sweet soy sauce, opposite of the soy sauce most of us are accustomed to.

Around Chinese new year, you see fun stuff like these apples. Loads of fruits and veggies are imported from Australia, China, Japan and the US.

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So there’s a little journey of grocery shopping. It’s fun to see the interesting items the store has!

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