Sunday, May 14

How I Eat: The College Life

Okay. I’ve been in college for almost two years now, and I’ve been in love with cooking and baking since high school. When I realised I was going to live in Bali by my self, all I could think about was all the food I could make for myself. It didn’t turn out as fancy and free as I expected. I thought I’d be able to make breakfast every morning, whether it’s cereal and milk, or oatmeal with condensed milk, or pancakes, french toasts, bananas with peanut butter, or the usual scrambled eggs. But after a while, and understanding the wrecked schedule of the uni life, there was a point in my life where I gave up making breakfasts. I would simply go to the store across my place, buy biscuits and milk while waiting for my friend to pick me up. I grew tired of it, and at times I would skip breakfast. I know how breakfast is the most important meal of the day, but when your schedule’s messed up and you haven’t gotten enough sleep… Getting through the day seemed like hard work already. Luckily though, sometimes my friends have their fund raising event where they sell fried rice for a minimum amount of money, so I usually go for that. But it could be too greasy at times.

Anyway,  I finally reached a point where I know breakfast is important, and I know that I’d have to eat something at the beginning of the day, especially when I’m ill because it will affect my medications as well. To make up for my lack of breakfast, first things first: eggs. Eggs are life savers during busy mornings. I usually make my eggs scrambled, or sunny side up.

Here’s an example of my morning: If my class starts at 8.30, I’d wake up at 7, put out the eggs, milk, and cheese from the fridge, have a quick cold shower to waken up my body, and put my towel on. It’s 7.20. Before dressing up, I’d make the egg mixture (basically cracking two eggs with some milk and shredded cheese, and if i’m in the mood i’ll add black pepper, pepper, salt, garlic powder and spinach), heat the pan with slight margarine melting and toss the egg mixture under low heat. And then I’d dress up quickly, check the eggs, put on my skincare, scramble the eggs until fluffy and plate them. it’s 7.35. I’d bring my plate to my work desk, and eat while I’m putting on makeup or even dressing up. I finish prepping myself usually around 7.50 - 8.00, and I’ll sink my plate with water (I would wash them later that night). I then wait for my friend to pick me up before going to campus.

If my class was a bit late and I don’t have any up coming exams or tasks, I would make the time to fix up pancakes or french toasts. If I arrived at campus too early and haven’t had any breakfast, I’d go to the campus canteen and fix myself one hard boiled egg. I choose hard boiled egg because it's not greasy, and only costs Rp2.000/egg.

For lunch, I usually eat somewhere off campus. Somewhere rather clean and healthy within a reasonable price. I would sometimes, if I’m feeling healthy and want something not meaty, I’d go for the tipat cantok which is something like an Indonesian salad (rice cake, cucumbers, tofu, bean sprouts) that only costs Rp7.000. Other than that, I could get a meal with rice, vegetables, sautéed sweet tempe or chicken, bakwan and sambal for about Rp7.000 - Rp10.000. Sometimes I’d like to eat something a bit fancier, let’s say black pepper beef rice bowl or tuna rice bowl which costs roughly Rp15.000. If I decided to eat out with my friends, we would order a few lauk and rice. Things like these costs way cheaper with a variety of food to choose from. Our favourite would be the affordable Chinese food, about 5 minutes from campus by motorbike. I rarely bring lunch from home because I just don’t have the time to fix myself lunch before going to campus. Therefore, I could conclude that my lunch depends on my mood and money (roughly Rp8.000 - Rp20.000).

In between class snacks are a must. Especially when your classes start early and ends very late. My classes are placed in random times of the day, so snacking is very important. When I’m feeling healthy, I’d bring an apple to class, or the leftover biscuits I bought at the beginning of the day. If I’m really hungry though I’d buy a bowl of bakso, a bun of bakpao, or even a cup of cup corn. All these food are reachable by foot, however the weather at my place is almost always scorching so using a motorbike is recommended. If i’m thirsty and bored of the mineral water I bring with my tumbler everyday, I’d go buy myself a glass of milk at the campus canteen, go to the nearby juicery, buy an Aice ice cream, or sometimes even to McDonalds for their ice cream. Snacking is fun, but controlling is still the key to a healthy body. Therefore I always control my snacking, especially snacking healthily and cleanly. (I just got the typhoid fever and I’ve been so aware of the food I’m eating these days). My snacking usually costs Rp2.500 - 10.000 per day.

When it starts to get dark, my boyfriend would come to my place and we would think of what we would like for dinner. When the tasks aren’t so uptight, I would cook for the both of us. Heads up: I never stock Indomi at my place. When I want some I would go buy one or two, but never ten indomis. I'm afraid if I stock them too much I would end up eating Indomi everyday. I usually cook pasta or chicken. But if I don’t feel like cooking, we head out to the usual place(s). If we’re not feeling like going out because we’re too cramped with tasks, we would order via GOJEK, something not expensive and is clear what it actually is (because sometimes we don’t know the location of the food we ordered, so we usually get food such as fried rice, garlic chicken, etc). My dinner usually costs around Rp10.000 - 25.000, depends on what I’m eating.

Late night hunger would cost me almost zero. When I’m hungry late at night I usually sleep it off until I wake up early in the morning with my stomach grumbling. But when I’m really hungry, I’d make some eggs or eat some fruits instead. 

Celebrations are celebrated usually by buying a pan of pizza by the beach, or eating at the Kedonganan Fish Market for some fresh seafood. A pizza + drinks costs roughly Rp80.000 for two, and seafood depends on what you're eating. I bought a fish, scallops and two rice for Rp80.000 (incl. raw seafood and cooking services).

That's my daily meal consumption in Bali. What I eat in Jakarta? That’s a different story.

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