Our first day at Margo Utomo, I had to finish writing a story, so I stayed behind when everyone else went out on a plantation tour. I was done by noon so I rewarded myself with a walk to town to look for lunch. And that's where I had one of the world's great chili sauces.
As far as I could tell, it was just perfectly ripe chilis and perfectly ripe tomatoes, crushed in a mortar and pestle. Maybe a little salt. What else do you need? The woman who ran the restaurant would make a small batch every time someone came in. She brought it out right in the shallow wooden bowl where she'd just pounded it.
It was a little roadside restaurant, and in the usual fashion there were about half a dozen bowls sitting on the counter, shielded by plastic covers to keep the flies out. You could ladle yourself some rice from the rice cooker and then take as much or little of anything as you wanted. They had a very tasty curried vegetable dish with unripe jackfruit, and I never even got around to sampling the mountain of fried shrimp. I left wondering how many other amazing chili sauces were lurking in humble eateries in Kalibaru.