When our uncle told us what nyuknyang was, I asked, “Aren't they just bakwan?”
Everywhere else in indonesia, the term bakwan is reserved for meatballs made from pork, whereas the ubiquitous bakso is made from beef. For reasons I'm not aware of, pork meatballs in Makassar is called nyuknyang.
A bowl of nyuknyang can consist of a few types of meatballs. Nyuknyang putih are the paler meatballs with a smoother texture and are made primarily from pork meat -- they're called bakwan halus everywhere else in Indonesia. Nyuknyang hitam are the darker meatballs made primarily from pork tendons -- called bakwan kasar everywhere else -- and have a coarser texture than nyuknyang putih.
There are also nyuknyang goreng, which are deep fried pork meatballs. Pangsit are your typical wontons, which here are made with pork meat. And pangsit goreng are simply the deep fried version of the aforementioned wontons.
We ordered our nyuknyang from the old man with the green street food cart parked in front of the eatery. Without ordering, the meal is served with buras -- rice that has been simmered in coconut milk before being wrapped in banana leaves and steamed until the parcels firmed up. You are not charged if you don’t eat them, but you'll miss out if you don’t. When you pay for the meal, simply let the cart vendor know how many parcels of buras you've had.
We also ordered few glasses of susu kedelai -- soy milk -- to wash our meal down.
There is a peculiarity to this eatery. Our uncle told us the building itself is actually owned by the people who make the soy milk, and the nyuknyang cart vendor is serving his food with the OK from the building owner -- all for a fee of course. To me it’s like the mutually beneficial relationship between an oxpecker and a rhino. I’ve been told this arrangement has lasted for a long time, it must be working.
Nyuknyang & Susu Kedelai
Makassar SULAWESI SELATAN
location on google maps