My neighbor Sherly said she wanted to eat chili tonight, so we went to this food stall in Taman Griya, Jimbaran, Bali. This place (couldn’t remember the name although I am quite a regular here) sells a selection of fried or roast chicken, fish, and catfish served in a terracotta plate with red hot chili paste and some vegetable. We eat it with rice; so yes, tonight I broke my no-rice diet (Sherly, you!) With red hot chili paste in front of your nose, how could you eat only a little rice? Indonesians loooove red hot chili paste, and we eat generously with it, often using our (right) hand as spoon. A spoonful of red hot chili pepper always goes with a plateful of rice. Guilty pleasure!
But waaaait!!! Red hot chili pepper goes with chocolate too! I was stung by instant curiosity when I saw this Monggo chocolate bar displayed in Pepito supermarket. This one stood up with the picture of red chili against its creme wrapper. Chocolate and chili? Interesting! I knew that Monggo is manufactured in Jogja, my hometown. I knew that the owner is a Belgian chocolatier, and therefore Monggo uses premium Belgian chocolate as the main ingredient. I knew that even though Monggo (Javanese word, meaning “Yes, please”) is a local brand, the quality is comparable to International brands. It certainly tastes more chocolaty (read: better) than Hershey’s, trust me.
Red Chili is among Monggo’s new variants. It contains 58% dark chocolate cocoa, vegetable oil, and spicy crispy rice (real red chili is used). The taste is quite a sensation! The spiciness bites your tongue as your teeth crush the crispy rice. Then it blends with the quality dark chocolate with sweetness that is not overpowering. The spiciness lingers in your mouth for a while, just like the sensation you have after eating regular red chili paste (minus the shallot and garlic, of course!). It is truly a product customized for Indonesians or other Asians who are fond of red chili. It is also for anyone who craves a little adventure.
No doubt, Monggo IS a good chocolate. Very innovative, too. Monggo chocolates are available in major supermarkets and some luxury hotels. For more information, you can check their interesting homepage: http://chocolatemonggo.com/en/home.