Taiwan is among the nice Asian locations that’s well-known for being a foodie’s haven. After I had the prospect to go to this small but vibrant nation this yr, I’ve come to see that such a declare is true! In any case, Taiwan has a number of bustling night time markets which are completely full of an array of scrumptious meals to eat. Within the capital of Taipei itself, you’ll discover a handful of fascinating spots — for this submit, I’ll moderately be specializing in the oldest one in Songshan District: Raohe Evening Market!
Spanning at about 600 meters lengthy, this single pedestrian lane that stretches alongside Raohe road is probably not as massive because the Shilin Evening Market within the metropolis, however with its measurement, it’s extra compact and fewer touristy; so, it’s excellent particularly in order for you a spot that’s simpler to navigate and simpler to flick thru.
Now after all, there’s a variety of native and worldwide meals picks to search out right here and if I had been to checklist all of them, it will most likely take me some time! That being mentioned, what I will likely be that includes beneath can be the highest dishes and drinks that caught my eye and which you must positively NOT miss.
»READ: Taiwan Itinerary Information for Three Days & Extra!
What to Eat at Raohe Road Evening Market
#1 Pork Pepper Buns (Hújiāo Bǐng)
One of these baked bun truly originated from the Fuzhou area of China however it’s generally known as the “Taiwanese Pepper Bun” as a result of its excessive recognition within the nation. It has a number of variations; however usually, they’re manufactured from chewy dough full of a combination of minced pork (typically beef), scallions, sugar, soy sauce, and black pepper.
Finest store stall to eat it from? Fu Zhou Shi Zu which is at Raohe Evening Market’s ornate entrance. It’s exhausting to overlook as a result of you will note a protracted line of shoppers! However I’m telling you, it’s well worth the wait (which isn’t too lengthy, I solely needed to anticipate 10 minutes). Whereas ready, I even had the prospect to look at their general cooking course of up till it was baked in a cylinder-like warmth oven — so sure, they serve it recent! Plus, it’s low cost too at simply NT$50 every (or $1.6~ or Php 80~).
#2 Grilled Squid
Squid is a famed snack within the nation and the bigger ones are normally marinated after which grilled. I noticed two methods of serving the squid: both unfold out flat or sliced into rings.
At this level, you most likely suppose that the squid is chewy; however actually, it’s not! It has a pleasant texture during which the ‘meat’ is tender. The spice that they placed on the squid additionally helps give a pleasant kick to all of it.
Worth begins at NT$100; relaxation assured the serving is massive so you possibly can share it along with your companion.
#Three Pork Rib Bone Soup
It’s generally believed that cooking meat on the bone helps enhance its taste and texture, and Taiwan’s pork rib bone soup is a main instance which you could take pleasure in!
In Raohe, you’ll find a number of stalls (usually the one with seats) who serve this sort of fare. I used to be advised that this sort of dish is much like Singapore’s bak ku teh, however Taiwan’s model has a extra herb-y taste and spice. One factor’s for certain although: that is simply the sort of consolation meals that I can eat and it tasted even higher when paired with rice!
(Worth begins at about NT$90.)
#four Pungent Tofu
Because the title implies, smelly (fermented) tofu is distinct for its robust odor which is sort of distinctive. Fact be advised, it’s mentioned that the smellier it’s, the higher it tastes; however personally, I feel it’s an acquired style. Nonetheless, that doesn’t cease vacationers from attempting it out to see why the locals love this fare. So in case you’re up for the problem, why not give it a strive?
Pungent tofu in Raohe is usually offered chilly, steamed, stewed or deep fried. I counsel going for the deep fried type which is usually served along with a particular sauce and a few minced garlic.
TIP: As it’s smelly, be ready that your breath would possibly equally find yourself the identical manner *wink* Don’t neglect to pack some mints!
#5 Torched Beef Cubes
There are a number of stalls that promote this sort of meals in Raohe Evening Market, and because the title implies, they’re bite-sized chunks of beef which are flame-grilled or torched on the spot as clients place an order.
It’s a easy fare however it makes for a really juicy savory meals to munch on as you stroll alongside the road. If you purchase one, you’re additionally given the selection to decide on the sort of toppings or seasonings that you simply like equivalent to salt, cumin, pepper, or teriyaki. TIP: Attempt the rose pink salt toppings which is beloved by many!
(Worth begins at round NT$200).
#6 Beef Noodle
You need to NEVER go away Taiwan with out attempting a bowl of beef noodle! It’s effectively beloved by the Taiwanese that Taipei even holds an annual pageant for it during which folks would compete to make the very best bowl.
So mainly, this noodle soup is made up of tender stewed or purple braised beef blended in beef broth along with greens and Chinese language noodles. I’ve tried this myself and it’s a scrumptious and fragrant bowl of goodness!
#7 Sausages (Xiang Chang)
There are numerous Chinese language sausages and the one which was tailored by Taiwan is named as ‘xiangchang'(香腸) which accurately means aromatic sausage.
These chunky, recent and plump sausages encompass coarsely chopped items of pork and un-rendered pork fats — and sometimes extra sugar than typical Chinese language sausages so you’ll detect a candy aftertaste whenever you take a chunk.
When in Raohe Evening Market, you’ll discover a number of outlets promoting these sausages in skewers with a number of choices for sauces to dip it in. If you happen to ask me, they’re value attempting! (Worth begins at NT$30).
Xiaolongbao is a sort of steamed bun or soup dumpling that originated from China, but when I could so myself, it’s Taiwan’s well-known restaurant of Din Tai Fung that ushered it to recognition! Naturally, virtually each night time market in Taiwan sells these dumplings in case you possibly can’t be bothered to attend in line for lengthy hours at any of the restaurant’s chain shops. In Raohe Evening Market, there’s a small store on the aspect close to the ornate gates who sells it freshly-cooked and you’ll have clear view of the lads who’re making it.
NOTE: If it’s your first time to eat this, take be aware it has sizzling soup ‘inside’ so don’t stuff all of it in your mouth. It’s greatest to take a small chunk on the aspect to slowly drain the soup out earlier than swallowing all of it entire. Be at liberty to dip it in vinegar and recent ginger that they normally present.
#9 Oyster Omelette
That is one more well-known savoury snack within the nation, so naturally, it has turn into a favourite in night time markets discovered at Taipei.
Very similar to the title says, it’s an omelette that’s primarily full of small oysters — however in contrast to typical omelletes, the egg is thicker as a result of starch that’s added into the egg batter.
This chewy snack is usually served in massive parts with sauce toppings, so it’s nice for sharing! (Worth beginning at solely NT$30).
#10 Lu Wei
Locals love the road meals idea of ‘lu wei’ in which you’ll be able to decide from an enormous and diversified collection of components (meat, greens, tofu, noodles, and so forth.) from the stall utilizing a bowl, after which afterwards, the store will chop all of it up and prepare dinner it in a scrumptious brine or broth. It’s a filling dish that provides a posh mixture of flavors that may make you need for extra!
If in case you need the components fried or grilled, the stall will likely be more than pleased to do it for you. NOTE: Recognizing these stalls in Raohe is straightforward since they’re normally the one ones which have tables in the midst of the night time market (or you will note clients with bowls of their arms selecting on the components).
#11 Fried Hen Steak (Ji Pai)
You’ve most likely heard of the well-known ‘Scorching-Star‘ store in Shilin Evening Market that sells giant flat fried rooster steaks. These are referred to as as ji pai and are thought of to be a distinguished snack in Taiwan whereby rooster breasts are pounded flat till they’re on the measurement of a steak (about 12 inches extensive).
After that course of is completed, they’re marinated in a candy sauce, coated in batter and deep-fried till crisp. In Raohe nevertheless, you’ll solely discover one stall promoting ji pai so be careful for it! In any other case, you possibly can all the time go to Shilin Evening Market afterward or go to any Scorching-Star store.
#12 Shaved Ice (Baobing)
Shaved ice would possibly seem to be a typical factor to you (particularly in case you’re from Asia or from the Philippines [suppose, halo-halo]) however Taiwan has some fascinating toppings that they use for this sort of cool snack!
Aside from the same old recent fruit toppings, I’ve came upon that additionally they have stuff like chewy balls manufactured from rootcrops like taro, yam, and candy potato, in addition to another sorts like grass jelly and egg pudding. If you happen to look effectively sufficient, you possibly can even discover outlets that promote a dairy variant of the ice whereby as soon as it’s shaved, it appears like fluffy snow.
TIP: It’s greatest to pair shaved ice with some ice cream on the aspect! (Worth begins at round NT$80).
#13 Muah chee
If you happen to’ve beforehand tried Japanese mochi (chewy glutinous rice balls), Taiwan’s muah chee are virtually much like it— besides that the latter is often grilled and coated with sugar or crushed peanuts. Very similar to mochi too, muah chee additionally is available in completely different flavors like black sesame, cheese, strawberry, and so forth.
These will certainly make for an amazing dessert deal with after the savoury dishes that you simply’re going to be attempting round Raohe’s night time market.
(Priced at round NT$40, served normally in 6 items).
#14 Deep Fried Milk
I’d have by no means considered frying milk, however Taiwan’s night time market scene did!
This fluffy sweetness is a must-try whenever you set foot in Raohe. If you happen to’re questioning how the general course of goes, effectively first, cubes of milk are dipped in a batter after which subsequently fried in scalding oil. (I’m undecided if the cubes are frozen or made into jelly; almost certainly the latter).
Anyhow, it could be easy however it’s very satisfying to eat!
(Priced at round NT$20 per stick).
#15 Custard Wheel Cake
This candy snack jogs my memory a number of Japan’s taiyaki. Taiwan’s model in Raohe Evening Market are spherical pancake shells with fillings that may be of any sort.
Other than the easy custard filling, I’ve seen different flavors equivalent to purple bean (like Japan’s), taro, chocolate, peanut, cheese, and black sesame amongst many others. Very similar to I anticipated, these custard wheel cake’s had been tender to chunk on and the aptly candy filling was the ‘icing to the cake’.
The perfect half? They’re very low cost at simply NT$20 a bit!
#16 Bubble Tea
The world-famous candy pearl milk teas or often known as ‘bubble tea’ originated from Taiwan; that’s why whenever you’re within the nation, sipping a cup or two is the least that you need to do. And because you’re within the nation that made it, they provide an in depth vary of flavors and even various levels of sweetness and temperature ‘settings’ which you could ask the store to make it in.
TRIVIA: The ‘bubble’ phrase on this drink’s title didn’t come from the tapioca balls blended win it however moderately from the way in which that the tea is shaken earlier than serving, thereby producing a lighter, foamy texture.
#17 Fruit Juices
This isn’t a ground-breaking selection within the night time market however it’s nonetheless one thing that I’d such as you to strive. In any case, Taiwan isn’t referred to as because the “Fruit Kingdom” for nothing!
Subsequently, go and reap the benefits of the nation’s recent and candy fruit choices. As you stroll by means of Raohe Road Evening Market, you’ll absolutely discover a number of distributors which are promoting freshly-squeezed juices — mangoes, watermelons, pink guavas, papaya… aaah, the checklist goes on!
Taiwan foreign money: New Taiwan Greenback (NT)
NT $1 = USD $zero.03~ = Php 1.60~
With the handful of vibrant night time markets in Taipei, Raohe Road Evening Market absolutely ranks as the most effective! Apart from, with its cozier measurement, you’ll positively get to discover the stalls simply while you delve into the assorted road meals objects and drinks that Taiwan is understood for.
Benefit from the meals journey and let me know the way it goes!
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