Brunei's Favourite

Yesterday, one of my colleagues started talking about food and the subject of Brunei's food cropped up. He was talking about the recent gerai during His Majesty's Birthday and whether that particular food is still available at the many gerai remadan's currently operating almost everywhere in the country.

Pronounced by many as sutung tutuk roughly translated as hammered squids is certainly an old favourite. Not many realised that other than at the beaches, sutung tutuk is only available during the July birthday celebrations. The dried squid, heated over a barbecue, will be literally hammered by the vendor. Someone asked why must it be hammered. The only answer to that is that the red gravy sambal would not be able to penetrate into the dry squid if it has not been hammered or pummeled into smaller portions. And I doubt if anyone has a strong enough set of teeth to bite through dried squid if it has not been softened and loosened by the hammering.

The squids all taste alike. It is the sauce or the gravy which makes the sutung tutuk nice and this is the one that vendors vary. I prefer mine to be thicker and not too runny. Runny sauces are nice too. I remember when I was much younger, after I have eaten all the squids, I would then drink the sauce as well. Haa.... I should not be talking about food during this fasting month.


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