Janet DeNeefe’s name is synonymous with the Ubud Writers & Readers Festival as well the Ubud Food Festival. What is perhaps lesser known, however, is that the Australian native who moved from Melbourne to Bali more than 30 years ago has also published two books.
“Bali: The Food of My Island Home” explores the daily life on the island and its colourful cuisine and has now returned to Ganesha Bookstores in Ubud, Sanur and Biku and is also available at Casa Luna, Ubud.
The immersive cookbook includes a collection of authentic recipes, including well-known dishes such as Gado Gado and Chicken Satay, but also unique offerings like Minced Prawns and Coconut in Banana Leaves and Black Rice and Tangerine Tart. The recipes are accompanied by Janet’s insights into the local culture, whereas an extensive glossary explains the key ingredients of Balinese cuisine.
Another appeal of the book are the stunning photographs alongside the recipes that tell the story of this lush island and its people: be it the men who collect sea water and leave it to evaporate on volcanic sands in order to harvest salt, the village grandmothers who make enormous rounds of fresh tofu by hand or the teenagers lining up at bustling market stalls for delicious sticks of chicken satay.
An inspiring and personal guide to one of the world’s favourite places and cuisines, Janet’s book transports its readers instantly to the bustling streets and colourful markets of Ubud and its surroundings, inspiring them to recreate the tastes from a Balinese warung.