Moving to a new city is difficult at the best of times and establishing where to source quality produce was on the top of the list for both Liz and myself (along with finding a good medical clinic, dentist, hairdresser….oh that list was long!!!) Anyway, when a friend of ours, who we shall refer to as ‘KA’ mentioned that she regularly shopped at Bintaro’s Pasar Modern, our ears pricked up. ‘Tell us more!’ we beckoned. You see, the best advice will usually come from others who have been out and about exploring and as KA had been in Jakarta for a year or so longer than us, she was the master and We..? her apprentices.
KA knew how to use her time with efficiency. Her daughter attended a school in Bintaro (south-west Jakarta) and each morning KA would accompany her to school. Rather than battle the return traffic, KA would head straight to Pasar Modern to do her shopping. By the time she had finished and grabbed a take away refreshment (we suggest nearby Lot 9 for fantastic coffee), the traffic had thinned out and she returned home with minimal delay (by Jakarta standards, anyway!)
So today we visit the fourth pasar in our ‘ajb Market Feature Series‘. In the spirit of ‘a picture tells a thousand stories’, herewith is Pasar Modern. We hope you enjoy.
KA’s recommendations at Pasar Modern
Fresh fruit and vegetables
Fresh salmon (get in early for guaranteed freshness)
Siomay* and pastels* (from Pastellia – details below)
Our impression of Pasar Modern Bintaro
Pasar Modern in Bintaro is bright and welcoming. As a single level market, it is easy to work your way along the wide aisles without having to negotiate steps. Liz and I visited mid-week (mid-morning) and the pasar was far from crowded. Vendors were keen to chat and some looked at us with a sense of curiosity (in a friendly way), inviting us over to find out why we were photographing everything within lenses-reach. Surrounding the pasar are individual shops selling everything from children’s ware to homeware & specialist cookware as well as a plethora of local bakeries. Plenty of parking is available around the perimeter of the pasar.
Our verdict? Pasar Modern is a clean and very accessible market. It is well worth a visit.
We have been out and about exploring Jakarta’s pasars. Check out our other Pasar feature posts by clicking below. If you have visited any of them, please let us know in the Comments section at the bottom of each post. We always love hearing from you!
Advice when visiting local pasars
1. Wear light, cotton clothing that covers your shoulders
2. Wear closed-toe shoes (especially important as the floors can be wet)
3. Drink water as the markets are rarely air-conditioned and can be hot
4. Go with a friend and share the adventure – together you can bargain more effectively and be a support to each other
5. Take time to walk around and check out which stalls are selling the best quality product. If you become a loyal customer, the vendor will reward you with even better service, good quality product and a more flexible price point
6. Be friendly and engage in conversation with the vendors as they will be keen to have a chat! Try using your Bahasa Indonesia – even if you only have a little (check out our Useful words and phrases in Bahasa Indonesia)
7. Don’t be afraid to ask about unfamiliar produce and how it can be used
8. Smile! Don’t screw up your face if things look different, smell different etc. It’s all part of the adventure!
*pastel: An Indonesian pastel is a type of savoury snack consisting of thin pie pastry filled with meat (usually chicken), chopped carrot and beans, rice noodle and sometimes egg. It is then deep fried. Pastel are generally consumed as a cold snack and commonly sold in Indonesian traditional markets.
*siomay: an Indonesian steamed dumpling, and although ubiquitous throughout Indonesia, the most famous siomay are from Bandung in West Java. Siomay can be found in street-side food stalls, kaki-lima*, bicycle vendors, and restaurants. Siomay are similar to Chinese dim sum and like lumpia and bakso, their origin can be traced back to Chinese cuisine.
*kaki-lima: travelling food carts
Pasar Modern Bintaro Jaya
Jl. Jendral Sudirman
Pusat Kawasan Niaga Bintaro Jaya sektor 7
Pondok Aren, Banten 15224, Indonesia
Open hours: 4am – 5pm
Phone: 021 7453322
How to get to Pasar Modern in Bintaro
From South Jakarta: Take Jakarta Outer Ring Road Toll towards Jakarta-Serpong Toll Road, then take the Exit 04 Pondok Aren/Bintaro. From North Jakarta & North Tangerang: Get on Jl. Tol Prof. Sedyatmo and take the exit toward Kamal to merge onto Jakarta Outer Ring Road towards Jakarta – Serpong Toll Road. Take the Exit 04 Pondok Aren/Bintaro.
Pastellia – Siomay and Pastel Shop
Pasar Modern Bintaro Jaya
Jl. Bintaro Utama, Pondok Raya
Pondok Aren, 15224 Tangerang
Lot 9 Coffee
Jl. Bintaro Utama No.48, Pd. Aren
Phone: 021 22210455
Words: Jo Photography: a journey bespoke