To research my book Indonesian Regional Food and Cookery, my husband Roger and I spent nearly five months in 1993 visiting places and islands I had never been to before. We also had a break in Australia, to attend the second Symposium of Australian Gastronomy in Adelaide. Most poignant of all for me, we went back to my birthplace and the town where I had spent the first seven years of my life; it was the first time I had seen them for more than fifty years.

From all the material that we collected on our way, and especially from Roger’s travel diaries, we compiled long introductions to the book as a whole and to each section in it. The publisher accepted the main Introduction pretty much as we had written it, but said that the travelogues made the book too long and that they must be drastically shortened. I could see the publisher’s point of view, but a lot of local colour and (I think) entertaining travel writing finished up on the cutting room floor. So I’m taking this opportunity to put the original versions of the chapter introductions on my website. You can go to any of them by clicking on the links below. The chapter titles are those that are used in the book.

But please bear in mind that these travelogues were written in 1993 - many things have changed since then, some for the better, most, I fear, for the worse.

Sumatra: the Trans-Sumatra Highway
Kalimantan: Rivers and Trees
Sulawesi: Water Music
Maluku: Spiced Islands
Bali and Nusatenggara: An Unexpected Pleasure
Java and Madura: Among the Volcanoes
Jakarta: New Waves