This past week has been full of firsts for me, in a big way, as well as the first time exploring some of the mountain sides and ocean cities on the edges of Taipei. It was also my first time to Shenkeng Old Street or Shenkeng Lao Jie, which is famous for having a row of restaurants and stands serving up stinky tofu, spicy tofu, fried tofu, bbq tofu, duo hua dessert tofu, almond tofu and tofu ice cream! Shenkeng is about a half hour drive outside of Taipei, on the southeast past the Taipei Zoo and Muzha, so you could combine the two for a day trip.
Before entering tofu street, I spotted this ice cream peanut wrap vendor with the bright green sign and block of peanut candy across from the entrance of the Old Street, and you know me, I had to stop to get one.
One wrap is NT$40 with a choice of pineapple, taro, plum or vanilla for your three scoops, or there's a rainbow sherbet type swirl action going on if you don't specify a preference. Just to be clear the ice cream here is NOT made with tofu, since it sits outside the tofu street zone. Haha.
A layer of freshly shaven peanut candy, a layer of ice cream, another douse of peanut candy bits and a sprinkle of cilantro and then the thin wrap is folded in and rolled. ICE CREAM BURRITO for a little over a dollar!! One of my favorite Taiwan street snacks!! Peanut ice cream wrap, spring roll, popiah, burrito, run bing- call it whatever you want because it's essentially the same thing, just with ice cream inside it!
At first bite, I noticed that there seemed to be a hit of salt in the peanuts' sweetness, and the owner confirmed that they do make their peanut candy differently with the addition of salt. It totally accentuates the flavors the same way that we love anything salted carmel. The ice cream is the perfect temperature- creamy and melt in your mouth and you get the crunch from the peanut candy. Hit up one of the restaurants for stinky tofu and then come here for a palate cleanser!
SHENKENG LAO JIE 深坑老街