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Monday, February 23, 2009
night market/taiwanese: i strongly recommend HUA GUANG JIE STREET EATS
HUA GUANG JIE STREET EATS
Hua Guang Road and Jhong Jheng Road intersection
Shih Lin District
Kid friendliness: not a lot of seating areas, most offered are cramped and along the sidewalk.
Visit reviewed: 11/23/2008
If you are a stinky tofu lover, you'll have to try this 20-ish year old stinky tofu vendor in Shih Lin that my friend declares has the best stinky tofu in town. Sit down on the side of the sidewalk, order large or small, with or without "la jiou" or chili sauce, and take-in the fried pungent aromas. This location is not as crazy a scene as the Shih Lin night market and it's a quicker stop since all the basic offerings are clustered together in a convenient vendor hopping maze.
While I can't say that not all stinky tofu isn't stinky, I have to say that fried stinky tofu is a smell that has grown on me in the past few years. It makes my mouth water because I think of the crispy hot tofu and the strong flavors and I actually like it, especially with the pickled cabbage. I can't stand the non-fried crazily stinky variety though.
The vendor right next to the stinky tofu also has some good "ba wan" and tempura, but you'll find out that you have to change seats if you want to eat it. You can't sit at the stinky tofu seats and eat the neighboring vendor's food.
There are street vendor rules, you know. LOL
If stinky tofu isn't your thing, there's plenty other of street eats to find on this busy intersection of Hua Guang Road and Jhong Jheng Road in Shih Lin. You can't leave without trying the grilled sausage- you get a half of a large sausage, sliced up for NT$60. Chinese sausage is slightly sweet and fatty, but so good.
This stand is 10 plus years old and watching the sausages slowly rotate on the sausage ferris wheel is slightly mesmerizing, if only the glass weren't so greasy.
Also good are the "tsui jian bao" or the steamed buns with crispy bottoms for NT$10 each. They only have one filling though and that's a slightly mushy pork and cabbage filling. Personally, I prefer the "tsui jian bao" at the Shih Lin Night Market.
A bit further away, there's "do-hwa" or soy tofu desserts, "ai yu" lemon jelly and drinks, freshly roasted peanuts, fried items on a stick, pig's blood on a stick and squid vermicelli. The vendors on the far end of the corner seem a bit deserted, so I'd stick where everyone else is crowding around.
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