The Story of Indonesian Rice at Kaum Restaurant


Although one day a year doesn’t seem nearly enough to pay homage to the nation’s important farmers and producers, Hari Tani Nasional, or National Farmers’ Day, (24 September) puts a spotlight on the hard-working individuals who continue their work to feed the nation and to produce quality products in time-honed ways.

Potato Head Family’s Indonesian cuisine concept Kaum makes it a part of its official mission to work closely with local independent producers to highlight the best Indonesian-grown flavors and ingredients. Kaum presents a curated experience that showcases Indonesia’s unique and wide-ranging culinary and cultural heritage in new and modern ways.
Kaum’s commitment to highlighting Indonesian cuisine and heritage extends to the people and communities harvesting and continuing the country’s heritage and traditions. The culinary team at Kaum is proud to use the superior ingredients sourced directly from local independent producers. In honor of Hari Tani Nasional, we would like to share the stories of Pak Gede Sweden, a farmer who provides Jatiluwih heritage rice for Kaum Bali, and Pak Nengah Suanda, whose Amed sea salt seasons every dish at Kaum Jakarta and Kaum Bali.

Heritage Rice at Kaum Bali
Pak Sweden is a modern farmer harvesting Jatiluwih heritage rice in a thorough, traditional manner. Jatiluwih is a hilly village in west Bali and a Unesco Heritage Site, thanks to these historic rice paddies, which still use an irrigation system dating back to the 9th century. In addition to the natural water management system, Pak Sweden and his fellow farmers cultivate the heritage rice in 15 traditional steps without the aid of chemicals. The resulting product is a rice that is fluffy and is a rich source of protein and isoflavones.

The Kaum culinary collective met Pak Sweden during a research trip prior to the opening of Kaum. They were inspired by his hard work and his dedication to preserving a truly unique Indonesian crop and knew they found their source of the all-important rice for Kaum Bali.

Amed Sea Salt at Kaum Jakarta and Bali
Northeast of the verdant fields of Jatiluwih, another dedicated Balinese producer is hard at work preparing sea salt. Pak Suanda is one of just 32 craftsmen who produce this amazing seasoning.

Although salt is an essential ingredient found in every kitchen in the world, not all salts are created equal. The salt is harvested from the sea and processed naturally with aged coconut tree trunks, which results in a clean, pure taste without any trace bitterness that usually occurs when the evaporation process involves a tarpaulin. The Amed sea salt is so remarkable that it has been awarded a Geographical Indication certificate.

At Kaum Bali and Jakarta, every dish is seasoned with Amed salt, sourced directly from Pak Suanda and his fellow salt farmers, adding another layer of unique Indonesian flavor and character to our food.

Supporting Indonesian farmers
Pak Sweden and Pak Suanda are just two standout partners we work with on a daily basis to ensure the food and drinks at every Kaum location express true Indonesian character and culture, and to do our humble part in promoting and supporting the hard-working farmers and food producers from across the archipelago.

 

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