Here’s to one last taste of my summer getaways in Taipei, where Mung Bean & Pearl Barley 綠逗薏人 always had me something looking to forward to.
Mung Bean & Pearl Barley 綠逗薏人 is dessert shop, serving the obvious mung bean and/or pearl barley sweet soup, and a whole lot more.
The cold sweet soups section of the menu offers a wide choice of toppings with the usual mung beans 綠豆, red beans 紅豆, pearl barley 薏仁 and peanuts 花生. Further, flavors a little bit unusual when it comes to sweet soup are winter melon 冬瓜, aloe vera 蘆薈 and matcha 抹茶. For the more adventurous and health conscious, they offer a combination of Chinese red date 紅棗 and snow fungus 銀耳 or a five grains mix. Each serving comes with tiny cubes of coconut flavored konnyaku jelly 蒟蒻.
Next on the menu is one of my summer favorites, crushed ice 剉冰!They feed ice cubes to a machine which spits out the crushed ice in the bowl, topped with mung beans, red beans, pearl barley, peanuts, or a combination of any of those. Add condensed milk, brown sugar water, coconut jelly, and voilà!
On many occasion I made this dessert my lunch, perfect to counter the sweltering weather and consistent enough to last me until dinner time. Also, I love that the brown sugar mixed with the condensed milk leave a kind of coffee latte aftertaste, it’s like having coffee without actually drinking one. Call me boring but I always stick with the mung bean, except for the one time I tried it with pearl barley, which I very much enjoy on its own, but ended feeling that the pearl barley (viscous) juice ruins it by masking that subtle coffee aftertaste, and by making the dessert sweeter than to my liking.
Their sweet tofu 豆花, made from non-GMO soy beans, seems to be a hit among customers, and I am eagerly waiting for my next visit to Taipei, during the cold autumn and winter times, to try the warm version of it with taro 芋圓 and glutinous rice dumplings 湯圓.
Black sesame cream paste is also on the menu, but I can only handle so many spoonfuls of this rich and flavor intense dessert that I have not ventured into ordering it yet. Some day though, I’m sure I’ll learn to like it.
All the toppings are prepared at the Tianmu location, hence guaranteeing consistency across all shops, and which I guess also means that I should not expect them to open a branch down south anytime soon :(.
In short, for a middle-afternoon/late snack or a light dessert, if you happen to be nearby one of the eight locations in Taipei, I vividly recommend Mung Bean & Pearl Barley 綠逗薏人!
Name: Mung Bean & Pearl Barley 綠逗薏人
Additional Reviews+Photos: flickr, pixnet/sunny2728, pixnet/bonnie0103
Address: multiple locations in Taipei and Xinbei
Price: 50-80 NT