Another comfort food I grew up with is Yuan. Mochi Balls in a Pork, Daikon and Napa soup. Most Taiwanese versions I’ve tried are filled with either sweet or savory innards. Tonight’s were stuffed with mostly Pork and Mushroom.
Taiwan rocks. We’ve been exploring the smaller burgs in addition to Taipei and Kaohsiung. Really enjoy the smaller towns. Most areas have some specialties that are available elsewhere, but somehow more special at the original source.
Like goat, Milkfish in Tainan. Turkey Rice in Chiayi.
Not a big tea drinker. Just visited a friend of a friend at his home in a small village, surrounded by rice fields and fish ponds. He went through the whole elaborate tea making process, which for him is just “making tea”. A ceremony that gives the tea its due respect.
Oh yes - in Singapore and Penang, like elsewhere where the Chinese diaspora settled, the Tang Chek (冬至) or Winter Solstice Festival which usually falls on 21 or 22 Dec each year is celebrated. During that time, families get together and make glutinous rice balls/ “tang yuan” (湯圓).
In Singapore and Penang, this ritual is called “soh ee”, i.e. “to form spheres”. Singaporean-Hokkiens speak the Quanzhou dialect whereas Penang-Hokkiens speak the Zhangzhou dialect, but they are mutually intelligible.
Had reservations at Xiang Duck restaurant in Da’an for our Thanksgiving Peking Duck dinner. At the last minute, couldn’t resist the Call of the Goose. So, hit up our favorite goose place instead for a most satisfying perfect meal. Peking Duck for sure coming Tuesday.
These two lovely grandma types were doing a thriving business from their overloaded pushcart, set up in the midst of the prime intersection. One offered me the most beautiful asparagus, about a foot long that just screamed “just harvested”. Fiddlehead ferns, gai choy, gai lan….a dazzling array. Her partner had the protein, chunks of pork blood, intestines and clams.
We bagged our lunch from a few venders and jumped into a taxi for some fine in-room dining.
we’d taken a cab from a night market the other night, loaded with bags of food. Driver was flabbergasted. You’re staying at The xxxx Hotel, and bringing back street food?!?!? Told him, we LIKE street food.
Live fish finning in tanks don’t seem to be as prevalent as in Hong Kong, especially in town. We saw some beautiful Groupa and other fish in some of the harbor town wet markets. Regular day and night markets are not operational thruout the day, so I guess running live tanks not practical.
Growing up, Da Bin Lo (hot pot) was always a wintertime meal, to warm the body and soul. When I first visited Taiwan some 30+ years ago, I was mildly shocked to see hot pot restaurants packed during the heat of day. I was told the advent of air conditioning made hot pot dining cool anytime. Works for me.
Dinner at another representative Taiwanese restaurant. This spot originated as a street stand under a banyan tree decades ago across the street. The Banyan restaurant is now housed in a two floor building, the namesake tree still standing tall outside.
A Taiwanese dinner, lubricated with Taiwan beer and baiiju.