Posted by on Aug 30, 2010 in Eating like an Emperor - in Taiwan | 0 comments

Hey guys, sorry for the slow update! Since I just recently got back from Japan, and am already packing to leave Taiwan, things have been hectic. Here’s a post, nevertheless, of my second day in Ilan teaching kids:

First I wanted to mention this delicious ice I had:

We got this after dinner, at a famous shop in Ilan called Ilan Black Shop. Sounds kinda suspicious, but not to worry, all they sell is creamy icy goodness. We walked in, and I immediately noticed the big buckets of ice cream, which came in traditional flavors.

You simply pick as many flavors as you want, as long as it all fits on your plate or in your cup, and they measure the weight. I enjoyed: red bean, peanut, milk, and dragon eye. Out of all of them, I would say the red bean and peanut are my hands down favorites. The red bean has chunky beans and is only slightly sweet. The peanut is packed with flavor, and very creamy. Together, they make me verrrry satisfied.


For dinner, we were once again treated, and we all went out to eat at a restaurant. Surprisingly, I’ve been to it before on my previous trip to Ilan. Unfortunately, I can’t remember the name. Well either way, here’s some of my favorites of the night:

This fish is directly translated as Big Eye from Chinese, and boy does it have one! What they did was they first cut half the fish as fresh sashimi, and the other half…

…steamed! It was delicious both ways, as I love both sashimi and steamed fish. In fact, since I was little I was taught to love every part of the fish: the cheeks, the eyeballs, the brain…. And so, here’s what resulted from a mixture of my love and curiosity: (warning: slightly disturbing picture ahead!)

Yes. I mean, if the thing’s called Big Eye, you have to go for the eyeball right? And man, I have to say it was the biggest and slimiest one I’ve ever eaten! If you look at it compared to the size of my soup spoon, you get the idea. Now that my eye craving was satisfied, I turned to the cheeks, and they were not bad at all either…

Another dish of the evening:

Little seafood dumplings stuffed into wonton skins, they looked just like little treasure bags! So cute, and they tasted wonderful paired with the vegetables and juicy meat. However, I would have enjoyed them purely for aesthetic reasons.

And finally, for dessert:

A sweet soup of mango pudding with very chewy almond tofu. It looks just like a sunny side up egg doesn’t it? Although the mango was delicious, there was something just not quite right about the almond tofu. Maybe it’s because the only almond tofu I’ve ever eaten has been like crisp jello, and certainly none of them had felt so… rubbery. Overall, it was a twist from the traditional sweet soups to say the least.

And finally, Ilan’s specialty, fried red bean!

Mmm, this tastes great when it’s freshly made, and piping hot. It’s sweet on the inside, and fried on the outside. Perfection!

Hope you guys enjoyed the post, what are your thoughts on the dishes?

— Jas

Photographs taken and provided by Jasmine Hwang.
For complete selection of photographs, please refer to the photo gallery: My Ilan Trip: Day 2 [8/30/10]

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