Hi Debryna! Can you tell us a bit about yourself and your day-to-day activities?
I’m a doctor who works mainly in the area of emergency medicine and disaster relief. It’s a fun field of medicine (for me); fast-paced, thrilling, outdoorsy. But of course, the reason why we’re talking right now, is that I cook and eat, when I am not being a doctor.
I am very experimental in my cooking and bread making. When I have free time, I can literally spend a few whole days in the kitchen.
What is the most recent dining destination you visited that left a good impression?
Just a few weeks ago I was very fortunate to experience Locavore’s baby program “Where Chefs Sleep”.
It’s a 3-day program of exploring Ubud in a different way, foraging, eating tons of good food. If you’ve been to Locavore, you’ll know how good they are in taking care of every single detail of your needs.
Now imagine, you are pampered with these mounts of lovely gesture 3 x 24 hours, with eye-opening, down-to-earth food experience as well. Mindblowing!
Do you have any go-to venues for hanging out with friends, or maybe for special occasions with family?
Yes, I have a few “default” places I’d go to when we’re indecisive. For a casual hang-out with friends, it will be Animale (get their cheesetart!).
For a more formal meeting, it will be Sushi Kawana in Blok M. They have private space and unpretentious, straightforward good omakase. Love how most of the staffs speak Javanese too, haha!
When you go out for coffee, what do you look for, and where do you go? Any regular places?
I’m afraid I have not been able to go out for coffees as much as I’d like to. That said, I’m a coffee person and a bit particular with my coffee. So I usually make mine at home and bring it to my workplace, or when ordering up I’d usually just pick black, cold-brew.
If you have visitors from abroad/out of Jakarta, where do you take them to give a genuine taste of Indonesia?
Pasar! When I am a tourist, I would want to know how the foods are done in the most authentic way, not necessarily the tastiest ones in the city. Wet markets will be the best place to introduce the city’s unmasked culinary face. We also can be immersive in the “pasar” scene; chatting with the sellers, listening to their local wisdoms.
What are your favorite local dishes and where do you go to eat them?
In Jakarta, it will be Sop Kaki Kambing Dudung Roxy. I’m not sure if it’s very local, as in Betawinese, but I haven’t found any better soups in other cities
In the past few years, we have seen a lot of unique food trends; which food trend do you like the most and why?
I love how our chefs are now trying to elevate Indonesian cuisine. We see it a lot with in the newer, chic restaurants where they’ll have modern dishes with Indonesian elements. It’s always cool to see people back to appreciating the historical and philosophical values of the food.
Is there any food you can eat every day without ever getting bored?
Definitely cheese. Now I know that’s a bit unfair as there are thousands of types of cheese. While I think I’d still love most of them, if I have to be specific, my favorite die-for cheese will be a hard, raw, well-aged cheese from ewes’ milk, like Ossau Iraty. I don’t think I can ever get bored with it.
Did you develop new recipes or discover a new type of food you have enjoyed in the recent year?
I’ve been developing many recipes for breads this past year. Currently, I am so obsessed with panettone and gluten-free sourdough bread. The ingredients I’m using for both are mostly local, with only the flour of panettone is imported. That’s actually the whole point of me researching on gluten-free bread, it’s my goal to make something extraordinary from all the exotic, indigenous grains of Indonesia.
With the growing number of TikTok recipes that are not only viral but also, simple and easy to make, do you have your own favourites or do you have your favourite recipe that you made yourself?
Do you know the baked feta pasta? It is now my emergency dish when there are guests coming and I have no time to cook. So, if you come to my house unplanned, now you know what you’ll eat!