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A few days in Taiwan


Ling
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Oops, I am actually not finished with this thread! I have more pictures to post tonight, after I finish up some work. Sorry I left you guys hanging... :wink:

No worry. I have a lapse of almost 3 months. :laugh:

W.K. Leung ("Ah Leung") aka "hzrt8w"
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Thanks for the pictures! They are making me terribly homesick these days. :biggrin:

One of my fondest childhood memory is at Ding Tai Fung, where the family decided to beat the crowd in order to get a seat...I think we were too enthusiastic as we walked in and discovered that everyone single staff member was lying, literally, on those long benches or tables taking a nap. I forgot what time we actually went in and how on earth they'd let us in, but that image stayed with everyone of our family til this day.

I am so glad you noticed the 7-11s! Even though they are ubiquitous in Taiwan, I still love being able to get all those things especially the variety of drinks. All kinds of flavoured teas you can imagine with cheap price too.

I remember eating those fish roe as a kid, and not really appreciating them. I remember just eating them cut into little pieces (as they are on the salty side) and the adults eat them with raw green onion slivers. I think I'd love them now!

Street food~ Man, I love them but my stomach/immune system needs to be toughened up a little bit in order to enjoy them...

Did you see all those bubble tea shops that are literally just store fronts with no seats inside? Last time I was there they were everywhere!

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different types of steamed buns

2269287711_4ab9e7a1c7.jpg

Ling, what in the world are the sputnick looking buns in the foreground here? I'd HAVE to try one, just because of the way they look! :rolleyes:

"Commit random acts of senseless kindness"

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  • 3 weeks later...

I was gently reminded by Rona that I had left some of you hanging in this thread so I'm back! :wink: Again, I apologize for the long delay.

Here is our last home-cooked meal in Taiwan.

Henry's mom made 5 spice beef and tea eggs.

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This is octopus stir-fried with what I remember to be Chinese celery. (I didn't touch the green--I hate celery, both Chinese and the regular kind.)

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prawns

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This is a fried pomfret fish. Henry's aunt splurged on this fish--apparently it cost about $40US for this one fish. It was delicious. Very fresh and the meat was firm and sweet. It was simply coated in rice flour and fried.

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I have no idea what this is, but judging by the way the dish was attacked, it must've been tasty.

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Henry's mom's egg pockets and Lion's Head meatballs. This is always one of my favourite dishes!

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So in the evening, Henry's sister really wanted to go to Din Tai Fung because she had not arrived in Taiwan yet when we went there a few nights ago. First, we went to the location in Sodo (on the bottom floor) and the lady said the wait was 1.5 hours. So we decided to walk to the other location, only to find out that it was closed for CNY that day! We trekked back to Sodo tired, wet (from the rain), and hungry, and the wait was now 2 HOURS for a table! I suggested that we put our names in and then go to another food court to have a snack before dinner.

Here are some people pleating xiao long bao.

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Each of those little balls of dough will be rolled out for the wrapper.

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rice burger, anyone?

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I bought one of these taro sweet buns while waiting for my takoyaki balls. It was pretty good.

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I lined up for the takoyaki balls at the food court because it was the stall with the longest line. Henry insisted I just order six of them since we were going to share some of his food too (plus we had dinner coming) but I inhaled the first plate and had to get another one because he didn't get any. I probably had 9 of them total--they were large and absolutely deliciousy gooey in the middle, and covered with lovely dancing bonito and seaweed!

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takoyaki being made

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I guess we forgot to take a picture of Henry's food--I remember it being pork chop, egg, and noodles.

He also got sorbet, which I didn't care for (too icy).

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By that time, we were pretty full and decided to order food from Din Tai Fung for take-out, which would save us from waiting another hour and a half in line. We got the red bean ones, the crab dumplings, the pork chop fried rice, and the pork dumplings. We ate that as a late night snack.

For breakfast the next morning, we had a version of daikon cake without the sausage/dried shrimp. Gotta say I like the other version better. Henry's mom's friend made this.

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I put my hand on the package of shrimp to show you how large they are. The head alone on the biggest prawn was almost as big as my hand! The bodies were like small lobster tails.

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cooked prawns...I had two of these giants! Maybe my hosts were being polite but they insisted I have two since they had to watch their cholesterol...

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Remember the chicken soup from that famous place I posted about at the beginning of this thread? The chicken soup that starts from around $80US a pot? We got one delivered from Henry's mom's friend with bamboo fungus in it. I think this version is just over $100 a pot. It was very rich and thick--think tonkotsu broth but made with chicken and Chinese ham. It was almost like drinking gravy!

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Braised pressed bean curd and pork

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Quite possibly the most delicious fruit in the world! This is called "sika" (sp?). It's very soft and fragrant, kind of like mango.

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This brings us to the end of our trip in Taiwan. I may have double-posted some pictures since I didn't go back to check to see what I've already posted, but hope you enjoyed this thread nonetheless. :smile:

Edited by Ling (log)
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different types of steamed buns

2269287711_4ab9e7a1c7.jpg

Ling, what in the world are the sputnick looking buns in the foreground here? I'd HAVE to try one, just because of the way they look! :rolleyes:

Don't quote me on this, but IIRC, I leaned over to take a closer look at those buns and they had dried dates (the red ones) pressed into them. Those are the dark spots you're seeing.

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That fruit is custard apple. Weren't you asking about it before? It's an ugly fruit but it tastes delicious, unlike dragon fruit which is beautiful but doesn't have much flavour (at least the white-fleshed ones, which are they only type I've tasted).

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I have no idea what this is, but judging by the way the dish was attacked, it must've been tasty.

2270083562_6df7b6b6fd.jpg

The name of that dish is three-cups chicken (三杯雞)

It's made by braising chicken in soy sauce, sesame oil, rice wine, sugar, ginger and/or garlic. Then adding basil near the end.

Edited by stephenc (log)
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:biggrin: Thanks for finishing it! I feel I can rest easy!

About the very expensive soup--did you think it was worth the price paid? It was very rich and flavourful, but was it $100 worth of rich and flavourful?

Fried pomfret is one of my favourites, and those prawns! I'd probably have eaten two, even if my hosts hadn't insisted!

Looking forward to your next trip! (I hope you and Henry will honour us with wedding and honeymoon food shots, too!)

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I've been swooning with pleasure and jealousy over your holiday, delicious food photos, and descriptions. :wub::wub:

covered with lovely dancing bonito and seaweed!

dancing bonito. That's it exactly... the word that has long eluded me for how to describe this phenomenon!

SuzySushi

"She sells shiso by the seashore."

My eGullet Foodblog: A Tropical Christmas in the Suburbs

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Ling, your pictures make me want to go to Asia so bad. It makes me want to take a year off from school and eat my way through Asia...

I showed this thread to my boyfriend while he was at work, and it made him reminiscent of the last time he was in Taiwan and then he proceeded to feel sad because he was stuck in Rochester instead of being in Taiwan :raz:

There is no love sincerer than the love of food. - George Bernard Shaw

star shaped cookies - my blog

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I have no idea what this is, but judging by the way the dish was attacked, it must've been tasty.

2270083562_6df7b6b6fd.jpg

The name of that dish is three-cups chicken (三杯雞)

It's made by braising chicken in soy sauce, sesame oil, rice wine, sugar, ginger and/or garlic. Then adding basil near the end.

Yes, san bei ji! We actually ate it yesterday too, at some mediocre Chinese restaurant in Seattle.

prasantrin: I think our wedding may be featured in Seattle Bride (at least, the editor said that the magazine should profile it...we'll see if it happens. I hope so!) So you might get to see pictures of the food if you can get ahold of the magazine. If not, I'll send you a link to our wedding pictures through email or something later on in the year. We have a bunch of awesome Seattle chefs cooking for us. :smile:

aprilmei: Oh, someone had asked me about wax apple, not custard apple... Thanks for letting me know the English name.

Edited by Ling (log)
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About the very expensive soup--did you think it was worth the price paid?  It was very rich and flavourful, but was it $100 worth of rich and flavourful?

It was delicious and I am glad to have tried it, but I am not sure I would go and spend $100 to have it again. The pot of soup was equivalent to about five generous Chinese soup bowls full of soup, so that's $20 per bowl right there. It was similar in terms of richness and flavour to tonkotsu broth, and a bowl of tonkotsu doesn't cost $20. I know that's a roundabout way of describing how much I think that soup is "worth", but I hope you get my meaning.

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It was delicious and I am glad to have tried it, but I am not sure I would go and spend $100 to have it again. The pot of soup was equivalent to about five generous Chinese soup bowls full of soup, so that's $20 per bowl right there. It was similar in terms of richness and flavour to tonkotsu broth, and a bowl of tonkotsu doesn't cost $20. I know that's a roundabout way of describing how much I think that soup is "worth", but I hope you get my meaning.

I get it. It was really good, but not really worth $100 unless someone else is paying. I feel that way about a lot of things. :biggrin:

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Thanks for all the trouble you have taken to post the pictures and describe them.

Question about supermarket/regular chicken in Taiwan: does it taste appreciably better than the supermarket US broiler (say Perdue, not a "good" brand like Bell & Evans) where whole joints are used, e.g. 3-cup chicken, red-cooked etc.?

I have seen pictures of the Taiwanese commercial poultry breed and the Japanese Hinai Jidori [that actually derive from US commercial parental stock], and would like your feedback. Also, what about other meats and eggs, if you could notice any difference?

Thanks very much.

Gautam

Edited by v. gautam (log)
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  • 3 weeks later...

Jeez, I'm dying for Chinese food! Our son is in Taipei now and I sent him the link to this thread so he can follow in a few of your footsteps. That looks like one of your most delicious trips ever.

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Quite possibly the most delicious fruit in the world! This is called "sika" (sp?). It's very soft and fragrant, kind of like mango.

2270088272_a0042f46f0.jpg

This brings us to the end of our trip in Taiwan. I may have double-posted some pictures since I didn't go back to check to see what I've already posted, but hope you enjoyed this thread nonetheless.  :smile:

I think this is Soursop, not custard apple.

May

Totally More-ish: The New and Improved Foodblog

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Quite possibly the most delicious fruit in the world! This is called "sika" (sp?). It's very soft and fragrant, kind of like mango.

2270088272_a0042f46f0.jpg

This brings us to the end of our trip in Taiwan. I may have double-posted some pictures since I didn't go back to check to see what I've already posted, but hope you enjoyed this thread nonetheless.  :smile:

I think this is Soursop, not custard apple.

You know, you might be right. I've only seen them whole and then as juice (I drink it constantly when I'm in Vietnam). I've never seen it cut up.

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Quite possibly the most delicious fruit in the world! This is called "sika" (sp?). It's very soft and fragrant, kind of like mango.

2270088272_a0042f46f0.jpg

This brings us to the end of our trip in Taiwan. I may have double-posted some pictures since I didn't go back to check to see what I've already posted, but hope you enjoyed this thread nonetheless.  :smile:

I think this is Soursop, not custard apple.

You know, you might be right. I've only seen them whole and then as juice (I drink it constantly when I'm in Vietnam). I've never seen it cut up.

I didn't have time to elaborate yesterday, but with custard apple, you don't usually cut it up. If it's ripe enough to eat, you'd just pull it open with your hands, so you'd not have straight lines.

Plus, you don't get straight lines with custard apple anyway, because you'd probably need to cut through seeds--custard apple has more seeds.

May

Totally More-ish: The New and Improved Foodblog

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