Johor Kaki Travels for Food

Singapore based personal blog of true stories by johorkaki@gmail about best food, people & places around the world

Monday, 30 July 2018

Eating Gong Gong during Padang Melang Festival: Sea Snail Icon of Batam, Bintan and Anambas

Gong Gong Sea Snail

On Jemaja Island (one of Indonesia's Anambas Islands in the South China Sea), gong gong sea snail is one of the island's iconic food. We had it every day we were here (for the annual Padang Melang Festival 2018 in Letung Village). We ate lots of it as it was so addictive and went well with everything.

Gong Gong Sea Snail

These sea snails were caught on the shallow sand beds of Letung's pristine sandy beaches. The live sea snails were simply boiled in water with stalks of aromatic lemon grass, and voila! we have a delicious dish.

Gong Gong Sea Snail

The gong gong's soft juicy spiral body is simply pulled from its thick shell - you'll get the knack of pulling the delicate, soft coiled meat out in one piece with a gentle tuck after a couple of times.

Gong Gong Sea Snail

The meat is eaten with a mild spicy sweet tangy dip which complements the gong gong perfectly.

Gong Gong Sea Snail

Letung's gong gong meat is naturally sweet and subtly briny - they're smaller but softer and sweeter than those from Batam and Bintan.

During the annual Padang Melang Festival at Letung, gong gong fishing competition is one of the highlights. Some fifty participants dive and dig up as much gong gong as they can in 30 minutes.

Letung Beach Padang Melang Festival

They stomp and shuffle their bare feet on the sand beds feeling for the hard sea snails. They dive and pick up the gong gong with their toes and hands off from under the shallow waters.

Gong Gong Sea Snail

The best participants catch more than 3 kilos of gong gong each.

Gong Gong Sea Snail

As the gong gong at Letung are fished off pristine waters, the sea snails here need very little cleaning, if at all.

Gong Gong Sea Snail

👉 Gong gong sea snail is ubiquitous in Batam, Bintan and Anambas. Remember to order it with your meal 😋

Wikipedia article on gong gong sea snails 👈

Where: Kampung Letung, Palau Jemaja, Anambas Regency, Riau Province, Indonesia
GPS2°59'40.1"N 105°43'28.5"E | 2.994469, 105.724575

Date visited: 26 - 29 Jul 2018

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