Spicy Enough for You?

If you are a frequent reader of this blog, then you’ll know that I like to eat. I very much enjoy exploring all kinds of different restaurants, cuisines and cooking styles. As such, it should come as little surprise that I am trying to eat as much as I can while here in Taipei.

For the most part, I am reasonably familiar with a range of Taiwanese food since there are a lot of Taiwanese people in Vancouver. Even so, it’s great getting this level of authenticity. We eat at some chain restaurants, but I also try to visit some places that don’t have English menus too (I can’t read Chinese). So, what have I been eating?

Shown above is one of the stir fry dishes that we tried at a restaurant in the eastern end of town, I believe close to Houshanpi MRT station. Those peppers are quite hot, so you’ll want to consume them with discretion. We also got a variety of vegetable dishes, fried noodles, and other great stuff…

Taiwan Beer

… like beer. I wouldn’t say that I consumed a lot of beer in the last week, but I’m not at all opposed to a little drink from time to time.

Taiwan Beef Noodle

A trip to Taipei certainly wouldn’t be complete without a nice piping hot bowl of Taiwanese beef noodle soup. This is distinctly different from Vietnamese pho, as the slices of beef (as well as other various beef parts) are sliced thicker. The noodles are thicker too. I’ve had Taiwanese beef noodle in Vancouver, but eating it in Taipei is definitely better. This was at a restaurant near the Guanghua New Digital Plaza.

Dong (Zhong) for Sale

This photo was taken near our hotel on Linsen North Road, but there were many locations around town selling dong (zhong). You get sticky rice and an assortment of toppings, wrapped in a lotus leaf. The Taiwanese style is different than what I normally get in Vancouver, which may be closer to Taishanese style or Hong Kong style.

Shabu Shabu at Mo-Mo Paradise

There is a lot of Japanese influence in Taipei and it shows. The manners and courtesy of the citizens are one indication of that. Another indication is the cuisine choices, as was the case with the shabu shabu hot pot we had at Mo-Mo Paradise. I believe this location was inside the Neo19, which is near Taipei 101.

Shabu Shabu at Mo-Mo Paradise

With shabu shabu, you cook your own food in a simmering pot of soy sauce and water. Dishes include thinly sliced beef, sliced pork, mushrooms, tofu, corn, and a range of vegetables, as well as noodles and other goodies.

Fried Chicken and Omurice Curry

Continuing with the Japanese influence, we also visited Curry House CoCo Ichabanya near Taipei Main Station. They offer Japanese style curry, as well as omurice (rice wrapped in an omelette). I opted for the chunks of fried chicken, but you can also get other meats and non-omurice curry. I know it’s not Taiwanese, but Coco Curry is always a highlight for my visits to Taipei.

Seaweed Flavored Lays

You’ll also notice that there are countless convenience stores around Taipei, including 7-Eleven and Family Mart. I buy a fair bit of iced tea and iced coffee while here, since it’s important to stay hydrated. I also enjoy the “localized” flavors of some junk food, like this bag of kyushu seaweed-flavored Lay’s potato chips.

While I haven’t yet decided whether I’ll be returning to Modern Toilet, I’m sure I’ll have many more food adventures before flying home to Vancouver. I hope you’ve enjoyed this glimpse into my culinary quests. Do keep tabs on my Flickr photostream, as more photos will continue be posted of what I’m eating, as well as other sights in and around Taipei.