Dija Mara, Balinese food in Oceanside, CA

Sambal prawns

Indonesian food is hard to find in the U.S.!  There used to be a restaurant in La Jolla and also Washington, DC.  These have closed so your options are Queens or Los Angeles.  That's a long way to go for lunch.  Then, Dija Mara opened.  It is a great addition to the Oceanside scene.  It has an informal, beachy vibe, but an interesting Balinese-based menu.  If you like Malaysian food, you will like Balinese food. 

We started out with Lombok iced coffee.  It is coffee with sweetened coconut milk.  I ordered the nasi lemak lunch set, which was a great value at $16.  It included two chicken skewers, rice, a tomato and shrimp salad, hard-boiled egg, shrimp crackers, peanuts and condiments, including sambal.  My friend ordered the prawns.  They were good, but the portion was too small for an entree.  It should have included more rice and also a salad or other side dish.   The menu also includes traditional dishes such as gado gado (a cooked vegetable dish), beef rendang, nasi goreng and more.  Balinese food often uses coconut milk and so many dishes are rich.  The food is flavorfully spiced and accompanied with a sambal (a spicy chili sauce) on the side.  It is easy to make the food as hot or mild to taste.  There is an extensive drink menu of coffees and teas, as well.

The lunch set comes with a choice of chicken, lamb, tofu, beef or salmon

The walls boast original art

My Lombok latte


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