#TaipeiNoms: All the Food I Had at Taipei’s Shilin Night Market
March 18, 2016 nandrawr 0 Comments
So it’s been almost a month since I posted anything here, because as always work took over a huge chunk of my life. I had a chance to go on a short, but very memorable trip to Taipei recently, in which basically all I did was eat, eat and eat some more.
Taipei is well known for their night markets, and it wouldn’t be a successful trip if I don’t visit their most famous one: Shilin Night Market. I tried loads of food, from the famous large fried chicken (大鸡排) to fried milk (say, whaaat???), and I live to tell the tale. And of course, show you ALL THE PICTURES OF ALL THE THINGS I ATE.
Can’t promise that you won’t go hungry after reading this. #sorrynotsorry.
Hot Star Fried Chicken
So, I’m just gonna start with the big gun. This has got to be the most famous snack from Taiwan. I never really thought what’s the big deal until I realised how enormous this golden-crispy chicken fillet is. I mean just look at that thing! It’s bigger than my face.
It lived up to its reputation though. It was not too flour-y or bread-y, just enough crispy coating for fried chicken. I chose to have mine with a sprinkle of chilli powder for an extra kick. The meat was very tender and deep fried to perfection.
This Super Cheesy Potato Croquette
This was so good, I wanted to give the guy who runs this stall a big hug. It’s basically a nice and warm potato croquette topped with ALL THE TOPPINGS. Some ham, broccoli, corn, sour cream and a bunch of other things I can’t remember and you can’t see in the photo because the entire thing was drowned it what appears to be cheese soup. It was so good, Alex and I were fighting over it. All that for just 70 NTD, makes a hungry girl super happy.
This Interesting Array of Egg Tarts
Egg Tarts + Chocolate Crust = Heaven.
I’m mostly sceptical about food innovations, but this one wins. I found a stall selling the regular egg tarts with various thick crusts. I chose chocolates because chocolates and I get along really, really well. They’ve got a variety of options to choose from coffee to brown sugar to caramel. I wanted to try every single one, but there were more food to discover at the night market, I didn’t wanna ruin the trip by devouring too many egg tarts.
Okay, this was weird. But, you have to admit, when you’re presented with a cart that has “FRIED MILK” (炸鲜奶) written on it, you will be intrigued. So I bought one, and let’s just say it was… interesting? It’s basically congealed milk cubes that’s battered up and deep fried. It was chewy and very sweet. I didn’t feel robbed off my 20 NTD, because I can now brag to other people that I’ve had deep fried milk.
Sweet Potato Balls
This one is suchhh a great comfort food. After an entire day of roaming around in the cold and damp rain, this deep-fried glutinous goodness is just pure perfection. It kind of reminded me of stuff we have back here in Indonesia, except this one is battered and deep fried.
This Very Juicy Cubed Steaks
Ok so it’s just cubed steaks, big deal. I can’t quite point out what made it so good, probably because the damn thing is literally torched with fire while it cooks on the grill. So, I believe all that heat just melts the meat down and the awesome meaty juices just seeps out of it. It doesn’t seem to have any fancy seasonings, just pure carnivorous feast of goodness. Let’s just say it was perfect to warm up your stomach in the Taipei winter.
Yeah, okay, this isn’t super special or anything. It’s not even native to Taiwan. It just looked so good, I had to have them. The batter was a bit too thick to my liking, but the filling was great, and it was topped with a slice of melted cheese. This one wins because of cheese, and okonomiyaki is always great comfort food.
So, that’s about all my shenanigans at Shilin Night Market! Yeah, I thought I’d go insane and eat more than that, too. Who knew that food hopping at the night market will fill you up pretty quickly. I strolled around the night market a lot, though, and it really is a rite of passage for anyone visiting Taipei. There’s much more food you could try. We haven’t even had the oyster omelettes (I’m allergic, sadly), deep fried squid, Taiwanese sausages (not a big fan, though), the huge array of fruits, shaved ice, Dou Hua (豆花) and much, much more. Safe to say, you can definitely skip a sit-down dinner and just eat your way through Shilin. You won’t go home hungry or unsatisfied.
For added bonus, here are a few more pictures I snapped of the night market!
So, have you been to Taiwanese night markets? Which one is your favourite and what’s the best food you’ve ever had in the night market? Tell me in the comments below!