Taiwan Breakfast and Markets

We are back! So it is time to get back into the blogging mojo. Basically, we have spent over a month around Asia so the next few posts will be dedicated to giving a recap about some of the culinary adventures we had there – really just a self indulgent way for us to relive our holiday. First up is Taiwan, a small island off China which we spent 8 days travelling along the coast of. I was warned that the street food here is excellent, so I should always leave room for “after dinner snacks”.  In addition to all the night market adventures, I actually did something new this time around and decided to film everything – I did a series called ‘Hotel Edits’ in which I tried to edit my days video footage each night. Without getting into the nitty gritty, it was chaos! Needless to say, I did not get a good night’s rest for the duration of our time in Taiwan. So for the first time with commentary, I would like to present to you – “Taiwan – Day 1*”.

After getting off the 9-hour plane ride behind two crying babies. They were twins. I know. The last thing on my mind was breakfast. It was 6am in the morning, raining and freezing cold when we arrived at this tiny restaurant in Taipei. People often say that the dingiest restaurants in Asia have the best food, this place was no exception. Their specialty is “Savoury Soy Bean Soup”, which is a traditional Taiwanese breakfast food consisting of unsweetened soy bean milk (dou jiang) soaked with deep fried bread (you tiao) and other condiments. If anything were to brighten up my morning, it was this. My mum makes this at home, so the appearance of goop is not new to me. If you haven’t tried this, just know that looks are deceiving – add some vinegar and this is the breakfast of champions.

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The restaurant also had a variety of other deep fried pastry. They make their own deep fried bread which was just as fun to watch as it was to eat (see the video at 0:37). Had we not been so full, I would have gladly tried that duck pancake – how sinful does it look?

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Look at the lines, and it’s 7am on a rainy morning. Unfortunately, this leg of my adventure was part of a tour, and the itinerary is all in Chinese, so I have no idea the name of this place or the prices. Googling ‘Taipei Soy Bean Restaurant with Green Tree Logo’ has proved fruitless thus far. Anyhow, you will definitely find this everywhere – food in Asia is always abundant!

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We then went up to Jiufen, which is a mountain district in Taipei. The photo above is the middle of the winding market place – basically an entire street of side-by-side food stalls. If you couldn’t already tell by everyone’s attire – it was pretty cold up here so the first thing we tried was taro and sweet potato ball in ginger soup (2:05). I would like to compare it to the one’s back at home (Meet Fresh), but that would be doing it an injustice. The glutinous balls were so generous and made so that they were the perfect type of chewy, the ginger soup melted my insides and I became a Kinder Surprise left in a kid’s back pocket. Would have loved to stay and eat my way out of here!

P.S. Hope you enjoyed the video – sorry, there are not too many photos of our trip.

*Unfortunately I did not upload all 8 videos onto Vimeo, so only the select few will be shared.

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