When news of the last food scandal about the use of animal feed broke out, I was appalled like everyone else, and then, thinking about it further, as the news and consumers were crucifying Ting Hsin, I just wanted to yawn. After all, the food oil company didn’t have to go too far to fetch such a malicious idea, since last year, it is a known fact that livestock feed soybean is imported and used to produce an array of soy-based food (tofu, soy milk, etc..). I seriously can’t believe it every time I type it, and reread the articles in Chinese a thousand times, but no, I am not reading it wrong.
As the unfounded French saying goes, jamais deux sans trois, in other words, never two without three. So let I, do a third udon restaurant review, and end the streak here or I’ll make myself sick of it if I keep writing about it.
This actually dates back to last summer, when I was frolicking around Taipei. After crashing an afternoon and enjoying a coffee cocktail at Gabee in the Songshan 松山 district, I made my way out, back to the the closest YouBike station. Unfamiliar with the area and too lazy to double check the path online, I walked around, following random streets, confident that I’d eventually find my way. It was late in the afternoon, and a few restaurants were already starting to prepare for the evening shift.
Walking by Hoshina 穗科, I felt like a piece of a Japanese garden had been transplanted into this residential area. With a zen garden in front of the restaurant, and the neat and tidy noodle workshop behind its huge glass window, it gave the place an appeasing atmosphere. However, I had other plans for dinner, so I snapped out of my daze, jotted down the name of the restaurant, and rushed to the YouBike station to avoid competing for a bike with the working crowd getting off duty. Continue reading Hoshina 穗科 (tpe)
Today, let’s talk about this nameless Kumquat Syrup Dessert Tofu cart, which on some days, could also be called the 30-minutes-wait Dessert Tofu car. Yes, I kid you not. Actually, the first time I went, I had some time to kill, so I joined the queue which had already started forming well before the dessert tofu vendor appeared.
This tofu cart, usually manned by two brothers, is popular for selling hand-made dessert tofu accompanied with their trademark kumquat syrup. An original pairing that attracts locals and tourists alike. Each batch of tofu is produced the day of, and with a growing popularity thanks to the 雄好呷 book and some TV shows, they are now selling four barrels of tofu instead of two in the past. Continue reading (No Name) Kumquat Syrup Dessert Tofu 金桔糖蜜傳統豆花 – 雄好呷 #049 (khh)
Let’s play hooky today, get on a train to Tainan, hop on a scooter, and zigzag through the small alleys, pass by historical sites, and stop here there at small eateries 小吃 which the city is known for.
Let’s seize the day, head east to Anping, make a religious stop at the Anping BeanJelly, a 40+ years old shop still going strong, for some douhua 豆花 (sweet tofu). I don’t remember my first spoonful of douhua there, but on a subsequent visit, I had enjoyed a lemon boba (tapioca pearls) douhua, it hit the spot and I’ve ordered ever after, each time ferociously making clear to my companions that my portion will not be open for sharing. Continue reading. (aussi en français)
➤ This article was written in June 2013, for updates on the subject, check here.
If you follow the news from the China Post or the Taipei Times, you may already be familiar with the controversy surrounding soybean imports in Taiwan. Namely, it has come to the public attention that 90% of the imported soybeans are actually GMO, and are originally meant as pig feed. This information is not a recent discovery, but has gained more traction since last year, 2012.
For the conscientious globetrotting consumer, GMO regulations are quite a headache, with each country having a different legal stand on the subject. Are GMO products allowed for human consumption? Is it allowed to feed GMO crops to livestock? How about GMO labelling, in which countries is a legal requirement? If so, at what threshold (you’ll be sad to learn there’s no such thing as 100% Non-GMO) is the GMO label defined?
Sure, this is not everyone’s first worry when moving abroad, especially in places like Taiwan, where figuring out daily necessities is already puzzling enough, but it doesn’t hurt to be a better informed consumer. If you care about what you’re eating, and avoiding GMO soybean, then read on. I’ve tried to condense relevant information, gathered from various Taiwanese articles and my own experience, so I hope you enjoy the reading and learn something useful from it.