Indonesia has once again proven itself as a nation that upholds the values of warmth and guest dignity during the hosting of the 43rd ASEAN Summit. This was abundantly evident from the heartwarming reception extended at the Gala Dinner, held amidst the lush greenery of Plataran Urban Forest in Senayan on Wednesday, September 6, 2023. To regale its esteemed guests, Indonesia proudly showcased a diverse selection of 19 authentic Indonesian dishes at this grand event.
The renowned celebrity chef, Arnold Poernomo, was entrusted with the important role of leading a team tasked with curating the menu for the evening, which was hosted within the verdant embrace of the Gelora Bung Karno Urban Forest, situated within the Senayan GBK Stadium complex.
Arnold Poernomo elaborated on the theme of the menu designed for the heads of state of ASEAN nations and distinguished international guests. The theme was appropriately named ‘Nusantara The Forest,’ which artfully crafted a tapestry of culinary delights from various regions of Indonesia.
According to the official statement from the Presidential Secretariat, an impressive array of dishes was presented to the honored attendees of the gala dinner.
For the VVIP guests, which included heads of state and international organizational leaders, the appetizer featured was the ‘Kepiting Andaliman’ from North Sumatra, a splendid composition of mud crab salad, watermelon, andaliman pepper aioli, pumpkin seeds, and baby spinach.
VIP guests, on the other hand, were treated to the ‘ASEAN Assiette,’ a delightful assortment comprising chicken mushroom terrine, bebek betutu tart, beef curry puff, and seafood roulade.
Moving on to the main course for the VVIP guests, the menu highlighted the exquisite ‘Daging Kecap’ from Java, featuring soy-glazed Lampung wagyu cheek, kenikir chimichurri, potatoes, and Brussels sprouts.
Similarly, VIP guests were offered a delectable ‘Nasi Campur Nusantara’ from West Sumatra and ‘Rawon’ from East Java. This delightful spread included fragrant basil rice, braised beef short rib in rawon sauce, pickled cucumbers, chicken sausages, and spicy chicken sambal.
The grand finale of the dinner was the ‘Nusantara Urban Forest’ dessert, a tantalizing medley comprising chocolate, spiced banana, jasmine apple, and matcha moss.
For those gala dinner participants who preferred vegetarian options, a specially crafted menu was thoughtfully provided. VVIP guests were treated to a sumptuous appetizer of ‘Salad Semangka’ from North Sumatra, consisting of ricotta cheese, sunflower seeds, mustard sauce, and kale leaves. The dessert for this menu remained the same as the non-vegetarian option.
Meanwhile, VIP guests opting for vegetarian fare enjoyed ‘Rujak Buah Jawa,’ a dish filled with compressed mango, pickled young papaya, pomelo, pomegranate, lime gel, and tapioca crackers. The main course for vegetarian VVIPs featured ‘Vichyssoise’ from Java, a delightful concoction of potatoes, Brussels sprouts, raisins, and cauliflower.
As for VIP attendees, the vegetarian menu included the ‘Nasi Campur Nusantara’ and ‘Rawon,’ mirroring the non-vegetarian VIP menu.
Adding to the culinary diversity of the evening, a selection of fish dishes was also prepared for pescetarian enthusiasts. This included ‘Nasi Campur Nusantara’ and ‘Coconut Curry,’ showcasing the culinary traditions of West Sumatra and Java, with offerings such as basil rice, seabass curry, pickled cucumbers, coconut mushroom sauce, spicy chicken sambal, rice crackers, and curry leaf oil.
The Gala Dinner at the 43rd ASEAN Summit was not just a feast for the palate but also a testament to Indonesia’s rich culinary heritage and its unwavering commitment to extending a warm and dignified welcome to its guests. It exemplified the nation’s cultural richness and showcased the diversity of its cuisine, reinforcing its position as a gracious host on the global stage.