Gado gado is an Indonesian salad with peanut sauce in which Pak Wahyu makes one of the best ones that not many know about.
His take on the Jakarta food has been so successful and discreet, many say it is a hidden gem in Central Jakarta’s Menteng district.
To this day, the 59-year-old Mister Wahyu continues to make the Indonesian salad himself at his wooden pushcart at Jalan Cilacap.
He has mastered the art of making Betawi style gado gado salad after entering the Jakarta culinary scene when he was just 20 years old.
Although the pushcart is situated by the roadside, Wahyu has been strategic in his choice of location where it is not too hot or humid.
There is enough shade from the trees to shield diners from the sun’s rays. Working on his own, he has a large pestle and mortar which he uses to create his legendary dish.
The Indonesian salad expert makes the peanut sauce from scratch and caters to each diner’s preference on a spiciness level.
“I make my own peanut sauce. I rough blend the peanuts at home nowadays even though I used to smash it by hand back in the day,” said Wahyu.
Once the peanut sauce is done, he adds a slew of fresh boiled vegetables such as corn, potatoes, tofu, and bitter gourd to the mix ultimately creating one of the best Jakarta food dishes around.
He admits to regularly purchasing his vegetables every morning to ensure it is fresh and of good quality for diners.
A portion of Pak Wahyu’s Gado Gado salad only costs $1.09 (Rp 16,000) which you can try every Monday to Saturday from 10:30am–4pm at Jalan Cilacap in Jakarta’s Menteng district.