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Wednesday, April 22, 2009
street food/taiwanese: i strongly recommend XIN YI MITSUKOSHI STREET FAIR
XIN YI MITSUKOSHI STREET FAIR
at parking lot/sidewalk outside A8
hours: Some weekends. Not all the time! :)
Kid friendliness: lots of room for strollers and lots of finger foods
Visit reviewed: 4/18/2009
Finally, finally! I see these bright red and white tents pop up on occasion near the Shin Kong Mitsukoshi malls in Xin Yi, but I never have the time to eat there. I usually spot it after I've eaten, but this time, I saw them setting up and made a mental note to save all of my stomach to have a little sample-fest.
Basically, if you like night market food, you'll like the food here. If you've never had night market food, then it's a good place for you to explore and see if there's anything you dare to eat.
I started from one end and walked to the other and just bought whatever looked good. These are my favorites:
1- Indian wrap (beef) NT$60
Someone has gotta tell me if this is something that is actually from India, or something like Indian Taiwanese food- a wrap filled with curried ground beef, chicken or lamb or vegetables- sort of like an indian wrap, roll or burrito. I've spotted it at Rao He Night Market, Shih Lin Night market and now here (but never in the states.)
This vendor has probably been doing this for a long time, as he attracted customers by calling out in Chinese and flipping up his paratha like pizza dough before letting it bake on a hot, curved oven.
There's even dessert options if you feel like having peanut, chocolate or butter- kind of like a crepe, I suppose.
2- Fried Mushrooms NT$50
There were quite a few vendors, but this is the first one I saw. I got a mix of the two- I think abalone and chantrelle. They weren't hot off the frier, but still warm and crispy.
4- ren bien or Taiwanese summer roll/wrap/burrito
This vendor was very efficient, wrapping multiples at a time. It was very fresh, as you can see the man making fresh skins to wrap all the vegetables and meats, and she was also stir frying the cabbage.
There was quite a few different vegetables, including something pickled, so there was a crunchy as well as a soft texture; sweet from the ground peanuts as well as salty. It's not as refined as the ren bing from Shin Yeh, but just as tasty.
3- Sausages on a stick. 1 for NT$35 or 3 for NT$100
4- Stinky tofu
Okay, finally stinky tofu that was tooo stinky for me. One bite and I felt sympathy for all the people who didn't enjoy stinky tofu. Probably because this was boiled and then grilled, stuffed with a bit of pickled vegetables. With two sticks, I didn't even know how to begin to shove this in my mouth, but after one pungent bite, I gave it to my friend.
And some stuff I saw but didn't eat
Sugar cane juice
And a lot of other stuff like fishballs on a stick, sausages stuffed in sticky rice (yum!), watermelon juice and squid vermicelli soup. I can't tell you when or when the street food fair happens, but sometimes you can spot them setting up Friday night or Saturday morning and they stay up through the weekend. Stop by for just a snack, or gorge on street eats the whole night for a meal.
There was a whole other section I didn't get to (between A9 and A11) but last time I spotted the tents, there were quite a few carnival style games for prizes for kids and kids at heart.
Happy Earth Day by the way!