Roti Buaya: A Betawi Culinary That is Identical to Betawi Traditional Weddings

Hearing the word crocodile, besides the name of a reptile animal, it also has a negative connotation. Crocodiles are often interpreted by some women, as chubby men who have many girlfriends and only promise false hopes. However, in Betawi tradition there is a food called Roti Buaya (crocodile bread) and it is even made as offerings at the wedding ceremony.

Apparently there is a special meaning behind the choice of this animal to be one of the foods that are brought during the wedding ceremony in Betawi tradition. Crocodiles themselves have a loyal attitude to their partners. Male crocodiles will not turn to other females, and vice versa. In fact, the male crocodile will protect the female who is about to lay eggs, then the male will guard the eggs until it is time for the baby crocodiles to hatch.

At first, crocodile bread was prepared to compete with Europeans who at that time showed love by giving flowers to the opposite sex. The Betawi people at that time wanted a new symbol to show feelings for the opposite sex. So the bread with the shape of this crocodile was chosen because it is loyal to one partner.

Crocodiles are unique animals. When the breeding season arrives, always choose the same partner. This is where the Betawi people believe it for generations. Crocodile bread is usually made in a pair. The size of the female crocodile bread is usually smaller than the male one. Usually in female crocodile bread is also added with small crocodile bread located on the back or on the side which means loyalty to posterity.

Initially, roti buaya was made with a hard texture, it tends not to be consumed. This hard bread has its own philosophy, which signifies that later the couple will last until death picks up. But as the time goes by, the texture of crocodile bread turned into soft like bread in general. And the crocodile bread after the wedding ceremony will be distributed to the guests in the hope that they will get married soon.


“Manusia tanpa cita-cita adalah mati. Cita-cita tanpa kerja adalah mimpi. Idaman yang menjadi andalan adalah kebahagiaan.”
- Ali Sadikin -
Gubernur DKI Jakarta 1966 - 1977
“Emang rejeki kagak kemane, tapi kalo lo gak kemane-mane mana mau dapet rejeki.”
- H. Benyamin Sueb -
Seniman Betawi