Manado cuisine

or Minahasan cuisine

is the cooking tradition of Minahasan people of North Sulawesi, Indonesia. It is popularly known as “Manado cuisine” after Manado city, the capital of the province, although other cities in North Sulawesi, such as Bitung, Tomohon and Tondano are also known as Minahasan culinary hotspots. Manado cuisine is known for its rich variations seafood, daring amount of spices, extra hot condiment, exotic meats, and European-influenced cakes and pastries. Manado food hallmark among others are; tinutuan (Manado style vegetables and rice congee), cakalang fufu (smoked skipjack tuna), cakalang noodle, paniki (spiced fruit bat), chicken or various fish/seafood spiced in rica-rica or woku spices, chicken tuturuga, and brenebon.

Although not as popular and widely distributed as Padang food and Sundanese cuisine, today Manado cuisine has gained popularity in Indonesian cuisine scene. Numbers of Manado restaurants has been established in Indonesian cities, such as Jakarta, Bandung, Medan, Surabaya and Makassar.

Manado cuisines are marked by mixture of native and foreign influences. Native Minahasan cooking tradition rely heavily on seafood as well as exotic bushmeats, and also their preference on freshly chopped hot spices. Yet sometimes they also demonstrates Chinese and European influences (especially Portuguese and Dutch), most prominent in their soup, cake and pastry delicacies.

Chicken and beef are commonly consumed. Yet, unlike most of Indonesians, Minahasans are Christians, they did not share the halal dietary law like their Muslim neighbours do; the Gorontalos and Northern Maluku people. Subsequently pork, wild boar, and even exotic meats such as dog meat and bat are normally consumed.


Fresh seafood is the famous in manado because the location of Manado which is close to the sea. Grilled Gala Shrimp and Grilled Spicy Grouper. That’s the favorite one in manado. Both were served fresh and very flavorful. The fish was covered with chili paste. In addition to the two main dishes, Sambal Dabu-Dabu, which is a mixture of shallots, tomatoes, limes and various kinds of chilies, was also given as a dipping hot sauce. It was ultra hot.

Cooked in black pepper sauce. Coconut crab is the largest land-living arthropod in the world, considered a delicacy and an aphrodisiac, with a taste very similar to lobster and crab meat. That’s available in Padang Spicy Sauce, Oyster Sauce, or with Coconut Milk Sauce.

Garoupa fish (grouper) cooked in Woku Belanga style, which refers to being cooked inside a pot enriched with various spices such as lemon basil, turmeric leaf, lemon grass, tomato, chili pepper, and lemon. The fish was tasty but blazingly spicy.

A traditional manadonese soup mainly composed of broth, meat, and vegetables. Beef soto and chicken soto are omnipresent in various regions in Muslim-majority Indonesia, but we had never found pork soto. Since the majority of the inhabitants of North Sulawesi are Christians, alcohol and pork are often used in Manadonese cuisine. Restaurants of Soto Rusuk, which is equivalent to pork soto made from pork ribs. Soto Rusuk Ko Petrus, which is famous in Manado for lunch or dinner. The soup is very savory and the meat is so tender. If you want extra soup, they can refill it for you for free.

Cakalang Pampis or Tuna Floss ala Manado can accompany with warm cooked rice or as a filling for panada. Panada is very closed to Spanish or Portuguese empanada or Jamaican patty. While in the west part of Indonesia, pastel is more popular. Pastel has a flakier skin like Malaysian curry puff and Makassar (South Sulawesi) jalakote.

Kuah asam is also typical food of North Sulawesi. It feels fresh and nutritious course. Kuah asam broth in a can of fish boil, can use any fish, carp, tilapia, tuna, fish tude, roa raw fish, etc. But the most delicious used the fresh red snapper. And for the acid, derived from tomatoes and lemon juice.
The content of this sour sauce also varies, sometimes adding pipil pumpkin and sweet corn, potatoes, carrots or vegetable gedi. Can also add lemon juice or bouillon powder. When making gravy with sour pork, must wear lime and add the ginger.

The important thing to make this menu which is to use a lot of spices. This recipe using fresh fish tude. Wrapped with banana leaves.

» RICA IKAN ROA (Sambel Roa)
Roa fish mix with tomato, chilli, onion and usually a companion Tinutuan and fried plantains.

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