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Sunday Twilight Smoked Duck at Casa Luna Cooking School

I had always been curious about Balinese Smoked Duck dish but had never tried it until my recent trip to Bali. I checked upon Casa Luna Cooking Class, which promised to teach me how to make some traditional Balinese Smoked Duck and other dishes. I immediately signed up for the class, eager to learn about this fascinating cuisine's unique flavors and cooking techniques.

Spices for Smoked Duck

The class was held at Casa Luna Honeymoon Guesthouse in Ubud, Bali, and was led by a skilled chef named Ibu Yude. She greeted us warmly and introduced us to the ingredients we would use throughout the class, including fresh vegetables, herbs, and spices.

Duck with Spices wrapped on a banana leaf

Our first dish was Betutu Bebek (Smoked Duck), a savory and succulent dish that is marinated in a mixture of herbs and spices before being smoked. Ibu Yude demonstrated the proper technique for smoking the duck, using a traditional sand smoker and banana leaf that infused the meat with a smoky flavor.

While the duck was smoking, we moved on to our next dish, Lawar. This mixture of seasonal greens, coconut, and minced meat is flavored with Balinese herbs and spices, and is a staple of Balinese cuisine. Ibu Yude showed us how to finely chop the ingredients and mix them together in a bowl, creating a colorful and fragrant dish.

Nasi Kuning, Smoked Duck, and other side dishes

Next up was the Fragrant Yellow Rice, a staple of Balinese cuisine that is made by cooking rice with turmeric and other spices. Ibu Yude explained the importance of using high-quality rice and the right amount of seasoning to achieve the perfect texture and flavor.

After we finished cooking our main dishes, it was time for dessert. We made a Non-dairy Balinese Coconut Gelato, which was surprisingly easy to make and had a rich, creamy texture. Ibu Yude showed us how to mix the coconut milk, sugar, and other ingredients together before freezing the mixture to create the perfect gelato.

Throughout the class, Ibu Yude regaled us with stories about Balinese culture and history, and we all enjoyed the relaxed and friendly atmosphere of the restaurant. At the end of the class, we sat down to enjoy our delicious creations together, accompanied by some Balinese rice wine.

Duck Smoker using piled of sand

As I left Casa Luna Cooking Class, I felt like I had gained a new appreciation for Balinese cuisine and culture. The experience was fun, educational, and delicious, and I would definitely recommend it to anyone visiting Bali.

If you're interested in learning how to make traditional Balinese dishes, I highly recommend checking out Casa Luna Cooking Class. The class was informative, interactive, and enjoyable, and I left feeling like I had gained a deeper understanding of Balinese culture and cuisine.


Rujak (sweet and sour salad)

Ingredients: 1 small chilli

3 tbsp. tamarind

1/2 tsp. shrimp paste, roasted

1/2 cup palm sugar syrup

sea salt to taste


  1. Grind the chilli with sea salt and roasted shrimp paste until the chilli is coarsely broken down. Add the tamarind, and mix together as much as possible. Then add the palm sugar syrup. Check the balance of sweet, sour, salty, and spicy.

  2. Mix the Rujak with apple, pineapple, cucumber, mango, Japanese pear, or jicama.

Note: fish sauce can be added instead of roasted shrimp paste. Kecap Manis (sweet soy sauce) can be used with palm sugar.

Betutu Bebek (Smoked Duck)

Cooked for 8 hours for tender and melts in the mouth consistency.


1 Whole Duck

2 tsp shrimp paste

1/3 cup coconut oil

3 tsp tamarind

1 tbsp sea salt

3 tsp Kecap Manis

5 Salam leaves

2 staghorn springs

2 1/2 cups water

coconut tree bark or oven bag, string

Spice Paste:

8 small shallots

4 large red chili, seeds removed

5 small chili, green

2 tbsp ginger

2 tbsp galangal

1 base wangen (2-3 ground candle nut, 2 cloves, 1 tsp ground coriander, 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg, 1 tsp whole black pepper, 1/8 tsp whole white pepper, 3 long pepper, 1 tsp sesame seeds)

1 tbsp palm sugar

12 cloves of garlic

5 small red chili

6 candlenut

1 1/2 tbsp turmeric

2 tbsp kencur

3 tbsp tamarind soaked in 1/4 cup water


  1. Place the duck in a large bowl. Mix half the salt, shrimp paste, tamarind, and 2 tbsp of oil and massage the duck to break the bones, and tenderize the meat for 3 minutes. Set aside.

  2. Place the spices in the container of a food processor and blend to a smooth paste or grind to a paste. Place the ground spices in a large bowl. Add 1/2 the remaining oil, the remaining salt, and kecap manis. Mixed them thoroughly, then add the remaining oil.

  3. Push a tablespoon of the spices down the duck's throat. Add the Salam leaves to the remaining spices in the bowl and push them into the duck's cavity. Rub the skin with the remaining spice mix.

  4. At this point, the duck is wrapped in an oven bag or placed in a terracotta pot. Place a sprig of staghorn on top. Place the duck on top of this. Place another sprig of staghorn on top of the seasoned duck. Place the duck and half the water in an oven bag or in a terracotta pot.

  5. Place in a pre-heated oven set at 180C and cook for 1 1/2 hours or set the oven to 120C and cook for 4 hours. The duck can also be cooked in a pressure cooker.

Basa Genep (the complete spice)

A sacred combination of spices and other select ingredients ground together to create a unique aroma, taste and colour. Good for Balinese Satay, Smoked Duck and Suckling Pig and can be stored in the refrigerator for up to one week.

Makes approx. 1/3 cup.


1 tsp whole black pepper

1/3 tsp white pepper

3 cloves garlic

5 shallots

2 large chilli (seeds removed)

3 tsp kencur

1/4 tsp freshly ground nutmeg

1/2 tsp sessame seeds

2-3 candlenut

2 tsp coriander seeds

2 tbsp fresh turmeric

5 tbsp galangal

1 1/2 tbsp ginger

1/2 tsp shrimp paste

1/4 cup water


  1. Grind the spices into a fine paste making sure all the gingers are bruised and smooth. Only the chilli should be recognizable. In food processor, blend all ingredients together, adding water if necessary.

  2. The Basa Genep should be fragrant, deep golden-yellow and of a thick paste-like consistency.

To store: cover with a thin film of oil and plastic wrap and store in refrigerator.

Suna-Cekoh (Garlic and Aromatic Ginger Paste)


4 cloves garlic

3 tsp aromatic ginger/kencur (can be replaced with galangal and 2 tsp ground coriander seeds)

3 tbsp oil for frying

3 candlenuts

3 tbsp turmeric


  1. Grind the garlic, aromatic ginger, candlenuts and turmeric in a mortar and pastel. In food processor, blend everything with 1/4 cup water.

Sambal Goreng (Fried Chilli Seasoning)

Sambal can be served alongside any Asian-style meal.


10 Shallots, finely sliced

8 garlic cloves, finely sliced

8-10 small chillies, finely sliced

3 large red chilli

1 tsp shrimp paste

1 tsp sea salt

1/4 cup of oil


  1. Mix the shrimp paste with the sea salt for easier cooking.

  2. Heat the oil over medium flame.

  3. Add the shallots and garlic. Fry, moving the ingredients back and forth continually until pale golden brown in colour (3 min). Add the chilli and shrimp paste mixed with salt. Fry for 20 seconds or until the chilli is cooked and seems bright and glossy. Strain, then transfer to a small bowl and reserve the oil for further use.

Lawar Kacang Panjang (Bean Lawar)

It is a ceremonial dish made by men and part of a sacred task known as "Mebat", which refers to the chopping of the food.


500 gm of long beans

1 1/2 cup coconut, grilled and grated

2 lime leaves, shredded

3 tbsp fried shallot

sea salt to taste

2 tbsp oil

MADAM spice mixture:

100gm/3 oz. minced chicken

3tbsp Base Genep

1 cup coconut milk

2 lime leaves

1 stick lemon grass, knotted

2 Salam leaves

1/2 cup water

sea salt to taste


  1. To prepare the MADAM, saute the minced chicken with Base Genep in a small amount of oil over a medium flame with the lime leaves, lemon grass and salam leaves. Add the water and simmer until the chicken is cooked. Add the coconut milk, simmer and stir for a further 5 min until slightly thickened. Set aside to cool.

  2. Steam or boil the long beans and chopped finely.

  3. Mix the lime leaves, fried shallots, and MADAM thoroughly with the grated coconut. Add the cooked, chopped long beans. Add salt, extra fried shallots and lime leaves if necessary.

Nasi Kuning (Fragrant Yellow Rice)


For soaking the rice:

1 1/2 cups of white rice

1 tbsp fresh grated turmeric

1/2 cup of water

For steaming the rice:

5 Salam leaves

3 lime leaves

2 lemon grass

1 pandan leaf

For extra colour and flavour:


To mix with the steamed rice:

2 tbsp Suna-Cekoh

3 tsp. Sambal Goreng

3 tbsp fried shallots

2 tbsp lemon basil, shredded

7 lime leaves, shredded

2 tbsp. ginger flower, sliced

1/4 tsp sea salt


  1. Blend fresh turmeric with the 1/2 cup of water and strain, only use the turmeric juice for cooking with the rice.

  2. Mix the turmeric juice with the rice and add water to cover. Soak for 15 min until the rice is golden.

  3. Strain the rice and then use rice cooker to cook strained rice with the aromatic leaves.

  4. Blend the Suna-Cekoh ingredients into a paste.

  5. Using a wok, heat the cooking oil over medium flame, then fry the spices, adding water if the mixture is too dry. Cook until it appears separated, for about 3 min. Set aside.

  6. Mix steamed rice with the final seasonings: sambal goreng, kaffir lime, fried shallots, Suna-Cekoh, lemon basil, ginger flower and sea salt for taste.

Acar (Carrot and Cucumber Salad)


2 cucumbers

1 carrot

1/3 cup rice vinegar

2 tbsp white or raw sugar

1 cup water

2 shallots, finely sliced

sea salt


  1. Peel the carrot and cucumbers, throw out the seeds. Slice into julienne sticks.

  2. Mix the sugar, salt into the vegetables, crushing and bruising to release the flavour.

  3. Add the vinegar and water. Taste the seasoning to make sure the sweet and sour is in balance.

Note: can be store in the refrigerator for 1 week or more.


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