Tag Archives: Indonesian

I’ve finished cooking “I” cuisines

Did I miss any? If so, please comment below.

My international food project, started 21 years ago this month, has moved at a glaciar pace since then. But I’m glad to say that I am now done with cuisines that start with an “i”. Or at least I hope so – I keep discovering new cuisines that I didn’t know about when I reached their letter in the alphabet. Indeed, in addition to the cuisines below I caught up on A by cooking an Awadhi meal – only to realize that I’ve skipped Aceh.

The final “I” cuisines I cooked are:


Jackfruit Curry, Vegan Indonesian Fried Rice, Indonesian Broiled Cod, Fried Chicken and Beef Rendang


Butternut Squash Soup, Split Pea and Barley Stew, Fried Fish for Nowruz, Chicken Kebab, Cubed Meat Kebab, Pomegranate Chicken and Braised Short Ribs with Orange

Irish American

Irish Stew, Corned Beef and Potatoes O’Brien.


Panzanella, Pasta with lemon sauce, Bucatini with four cheeses, Pasta in Mushroom Sauce, Gnocchi in a Gorgonzola, Pear and Walnut Sauce, Country Style Chicken and Steak Tagliata

Italian Renaissance

Onion Soup, Renaissance-style Fried Chicken and Braised Beef with Carrots

These join my previously cooked I cuisines:

  • Iceland: baked fish, chicken with saffron and pepper cookies
  • Imperial China: a chicken wing recipe from the 8th century, braised chicken from the 10th-13th and beef and walnuts from the 18th.
  • India: chickpea, red bean, and chicken curries plus chicken and tofu tandoori
  • Indo-Chinese: noodles and cauliflower
  • Iraq: lentil soup, two types of kibbeh, chicken in yogurt sauce, lamb shanks, rice, and farro pilaf
  • Ireland: Irish stew, beef & stout pie, potato biscuits, and bread and butter pudding.
  • Iroquois: ghost bread and three sisters stew
  • Israel: corn shakshuka, meatballs in tahini sauce, lamb shawarma, grilled chicken and olive oil cake
  • Italian-American: minestrone, fetuccini alfredo, baked zitti, spaghetti and meatballs, lasagna, vegan lasagna, chicken scarpariello and chicken parmesan.
  • Ivory Coast: grilled chicken, roasted lamb, stewed chicken and peanut sauce.

Padi Restaurant Review – San Leandro

Jan 2014 Update

We returned to Padi tonight with a group of San Leandro friends, including a couple who’d spent months traveling around Indonesia after college (and who actually remembered how to speak some Indonesian!).  While the menu is still limited, this gave us an opportunity to try some dishes we’d missed the time before.  I’m glad we did, for a couple of them ere real winners.

My favorite has to be the Mie Tek Tek Ayam (Fried Noodle w/ Chicken – $9).  The thick soft noodles resembled those in chow mein, but were coated with a sauce that had a lovely, slightly sweet flavor.  The dish was very well balanced and it was a generous portion.  I’d definitely order it again.

I only had a bite of what I believe was the Ayam Balado (Spicy Chili Chicken – $10), bone-in chicken in a heavy dark sauce, but it was delicious. It was, again, slightly sweet but with a deep flavor. I’d like to have more.  The chicken satay was once again a winner, though once again I disliked the peanut sauce, though my daughter liked it.

While it’s not on the menu, the Nasi Goreng (Chicken & shrimp fried rice – $9) was also tasty, though not more than the Chinese version.  My friends all seemed to like the eggplant dish, but I didn’t try it.  The one dish nobody thought much of was the Gado Gado (Indonesian Warm Salad w/ Peanut Sauce – $8).  I’m not surprised, as it was the same sauce that came with the satay.

Service was amazing, with two very attentive waiters who catered our every need.  The owner chef came to our table a few times, and he gave us a complimentary dessert.  My daughter loved the Ketan Hitam (Black glutinous rice pudding with coconut milk – $5) but I wasn’t as fond of it.  It wasn’t too sweet and it just didn’t do it for me. She was happy she could eat my portion.

Padi also sells some Indonesian goodies you can take with you (as well as Indonesian food items to do your own cooking), and Mike bought a container of something that looked like donut holes.  They weren’t quite that, but they were very tasty as well.

In all, it was a great dinner and I’d love to go back soon for more of those noodles!

Original Review – September 2013

I love Indonesian food so I was glad to find that Padi opened a restaurant in unincorporated San Leandro.  This restaurant is by no means perfect, and anywhere but in San Leandro it might not merit much enthusiasm, but there is such a dearth of food variety here that it is more than welcomed.

The restaurant’s main problem is its lack of ambiance.  Now,  I traveled throughout many developing countries on a $15 a day budget and I can find some nostalgia on undecorated dining rooms with formica tables and metal chairs, but only if they come together with dirt cheap food.  Padi’s prices are too high, and they should make more of an effort to spruce the place up.

Having to order at the front, rather than on the table, is also annoying.  You are crowded by the entrance, trying to quickly decide between the limited selections, which makes it less than a relaxing experience.  Given how small the place is, I don’t quite understand why they can’t take orders at the table.

The menu includes a small selection of meat and vegetarian items.  If you want to try them all, you can go for a “mini” rijstaffel for two which includes 12 items for $44.  Unfortunately, they do not serve any breads/pancakes, my favorite Indonesian items.

On the plus side, the food is pretty tasty.  The chicken satay ($10 for 6 skewers) was delicious, with a strong, sweet flavor and a nice peanut sauce.  The ayam madu, or honey grilled chicken ($12), was similar, though it didn’t come in skewers. It was somewhat sweeter and perhaps less balanced.  Both were grilled and had some blackened parts which added to the flavor.

The beef rendang ($11) was also good, though too spicy for the kids (just spicy enough for me). I felt it needed a bit more intensity, however, and this is a dish that would prove boring if it’s all you ordered.

Service was very good and pleasant.  I definitely want to return.

Padi Restaurant & Catering
16695 E 14th St
San Leandro, CA
(510) 244-7667
M, W-F 11:30 AM – 3 PM, 4 PM – 8 PM
Sa – Su 10 AM – 8 PM
Closed Tuesdays

San Leandro Restaurant Reviews