March 29, 2008

Dhenok, the jamu gendong vendor

When mom still alive, her morning routine was to buy a glass of jamu (Javanese herbal health drinks) from Dhenok, the jamu gendong vendor. It is called jamu gendong because these vendors (usually women) carry (gendong) home-made herbal drinks in baskets on their backs and offer them door to door in the morning.

Out of many jamu vendors that passed by my sister's house, mom preferred Dhenok because she is friendly and didn't mind to listen to mom's ramblings. Dhenok has become an important part of mom's morning ritual she would miss her if she didn't see Dhenok around. When me or my young bro came over to visit mom, she had more reason to buy more jamu from Dhenok for all of us. The typical ingredients of jamu consist of rice powder, turmeric, ginger, bitter galangal (brotowali), lime leaves, Javanese palm sugar, turmeric, lesser galangal (kencur), betel leaves (daun sirih), water, salt and assorted herbal ingredients. There is jamu to refresh and restore energy, jamu to cleanse the blood, jamu to get rid of masuk angin (to cure a case of the chills), jamu to lose weight, jamu to increase children's appetite, jamu for painful period, jamu to increase potency etc. A glass of jamu costs only 2,000 Rupiahs or 25 US cents.Dhenok woke up at 4am every morning, prepare the jamu with fresh ingredients and make her rounds started from 6:30am. Now even though mom is no longer around, Dhenok always stops by at my sister's house over the weekend. She is indeed a very nice person and has loyal customers around the neighborhood.

7 comments:

judith said...

Aduh jadi inget di Solo dulu. Eyangku punya bakul jamu lengganan, namanya mbok sayang ! Karena semua pembeli si embok manggilnya sayang,he 3x.

Aspal dijalan,ngomong2 berpulau yak? .. jadi inget waktu di Jakarta tiap ada aspal kroak gitu, lamaaaa deh perbaikkannya ...

Salam.

Fun said...

hikshiks aku paling ga bisa minum jamu... pernah coba abis itu (maap) BAB terus.. entah karena ga cocok atau gimana..
tapi salutnya yak.. mereka kuat loh gendong tuh botol2 jamu... ck..ck..

Therry said...

Love that beras kencur drink :D and ginger stuff ... yum yum

i believe in the traditional herbal drinks!

Finally Woken said...

I'd drink anything except brotowali! Actually at some hotels like Ritz, Dharmawangsa and Shangri-La, they have jamu on Sunday brunch on special occasions. The last time when we're back in Indonesia we went to Ritz and my husband drunk it in front of his other Caucasian friends who looked at him in disbelief... :)

Mrs. Baasje said...

I love traditional herbal drinks !...I used to drink it every morning

T Sima Gunawan said...

di bintaro jg ada mbak-mbak jualan jamu. eh... aku jadi kepikiran, kayaknya udah beberapa bulan ini ga kedengaran suaranya? biasanya dia suka teriak.. "jamuuuuuu.."
kemana yach dia?
aku pernah beli beras kencur tp dah lama banget.

calista kebaya said...

jadi ingat masa SMA dulu punya langganan jamu tiap sore lewat pasti punya panggilan khas...dgn logat jawanya yg kental ... mbak jamu nya mbak... mbak jamu nya mbak...sreettttt ketipluk... dari belakang menuju teras.. segelas jamu temu ireng mbak .. (pahitnya yg pekat sangat memikat) percaya banget deh klo jamu itu sehat alami dan bermamfaat banget...