Taipei Food

We have been in Taipei for four weeks now. There is certainly plenty to talk about, but today I’m going to just talk about the food!

We are staying with Mags’s aunt and uncle. Gugu (aunt in Chinese) is an amazing chef making different things for every dinner.


The master chef with her creation.


Stu approves!

Most of the dinners that Gugu makes include soup, meat, seafood, veggies, tofu, and rice.


Taiwanese pumpkin soup, braised smoked duck, fried daikon rice cake, super hot peppers in oil, mixed veggies, and broccoli (clockwise)


these local peppers were hotter than anything I ate in Belize! which is saying something...


The food isn't just tasty; it's also pretty.

We even cooked dinner one night. It is pretty rare for us to cook since we left San Francisco. We could probably count the number of times on two hands. Cooking at home in Taipei made me wonder at how Gugu whips up amazing multi-course meals on a nightly basis in seemingly no time. There’s just two burners and a toaster oven in the kitchen, with room for one person to cook. I assume this kitchen layout is typical in Taipei, where space is at a premium.


We cook once for a change. Fun and tasty!

Aside from the amazing food at home, we’ve had some adventures at the night markets and restaurants.


Stu eats a chicken foot at the night market.


close-up of the chicken foot

The food at the night markets here reminds me of food you will find being sold to “foodies” in American cities. Basically, people combine together things you wouldn’t normally think of, and see what sticks. Like the wasabi hot dog that I had. And the ice cream spring roll pictured below, which was absolutely delicious, by the way.


Fun time at the night market- Ice cream springs roll! one more scoop to come

At another night market, with  cousins Shinzi and Cloey, we had pig’s blood and rice pudding on a stick, coated in peanuts. It wasn’t bad, but as far as I can tell one would mostly buy it for the novelty of it. That is certainly one thing you won’t find in San Francisco.

Here, chopsticks rule the day, as you might expect. We have only used a fork twice since arriving a month ago, and both times it was at a nice restaurant. Chopsticks tend to be very practical for Taiwanese food, because it is usually all cut up during the cooking process.


Stinky tofu for lunch one day. That's the literal translation, and it is apt.

One other thing to note is that shops are ubiquitous here. It isn’t like most places in the states which have designated industrial, commercial, and residential zones. Here, everything is mixed together and there are shops small and large everywhere. On our block there is a tofu factory where you can buy large sheets of tofu. There’s also small bakeries and pastry shops here. Taiwanese people love their dessert pastries.


Fresh tofu made throughout the day on the corner near our home. Stacks and stacks of it.


Fresh Mantou steamed buns. "Steamed bread?" you say? It is actually quite good.

In short, our taste buds and bellies have been treated well once again as we travel! And with two more months in Taiwan, I am sure we’ll continue to be amazed by Gugu’s cooking, the restaurants, and the night market street food!

For the full album of this portion of our trip, click here. We miss you all!

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2 Responses to Taipei Food

  1. Kat Wentworth says:

    Incredible! Especially the pictures of the feasts that your aunt creates daily in their tiny kitchen. Thank you for documenting your adventures.

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