Monday, October 26, 2009
It is a bit like tofu, with a mild flavor and a smooth texture, although it's not as light as tofu - it gives you something you can bite into. It's really unlike anything I've had before, it's just so smooth! I love it.
If you order this hot pot, you get unlimited duck's blood and tofu in the spicy, red side, unlimited cabbage in the white side, and unlimited broth for both. Then you can order anything else you want to put into the pot. We had 15 people, so we got tons of food to put in our hot pot including:
mmmmm hot pot!
Saturday, October 24, 2009
There are some foods hat you can eat and you can say something like 'well I don't like the idea of eating frog, but when I eat it, it just looks like chicken, so I can get over the idea of it'
well... Chicken feet is definitely not one of those foods!
These definitely look like what they are. BUT They're actually really good! There isn't much meat, just some tasty skin and cartilage so they're a bit gelatinous and chewy.
Friday, October 23, 2009
Our vacation in Hualien was by far the most relaxing week that we've had all year, and although I am very happy that we ended up living in Taichung, if I could do it all over again, I think I would definitely have chosen to live in Hualien.
Hualien is sandwiched right between the ocean and the mountains, and offers easy access to both. Every time we hopped on the scooter, I found myself scrambling for the camera, trying to capture the roadside scenery - which, of course, is almost impossible.
Highway 11 is a beautiful drive south of Hualien, first winding through the mountains,
and then along the beautiful coastline
And why, you may be asking your self, is it called Cow Mountain? Well, I believe it has something to do with the fact that there are actually cows on the beach. Actually, we didn't see any cows while we were there, but we definitely found evidence that this is a place frequented by our bovine friends:
But the beauty of Taiwan's east coast isn't isolated to the drive south of Hualien. A drive to the north of Taroko Gorge, also has awesome views of Taiwan's mountains
and the rugged coast line
Tuesday, October 13, 2009
Sunday, October 11, 2009
THIS time, however, was much better. The weather was fantastic, there were hardly any people around, and the trip was planned by someone else! All we had to do was show up and enjoy ourselves.
Our first stop was to the Lukang Folk Arts Museum （鹿港民俗文物館).
It looked kind of like this:
but much smaller and with only three little metal prongs, I was all about it - I think I should get one and keep it on my key chain, for ear-itching emergencies!
They also had some old Chinese toys outside that visitors could play with, so we spent some time trying out the stilts. My Japanese classmate had no problem walking around on them:
As for myself... let's just say my balance leaves something to be desired. Despite extensive help and support, I couldn't quite make it on my own.
My favorite part about the museum was the landscaping. The inside was cool, but the outside was beautiful. It seemed like the original owners built it as a sanctuary from the hectic city life, it had such a relaxing feel to it. It was a gorgeous day as well, so we spent some time just sitting in the shade enjoying the garden. It was great.
After the museum and some lunch, it was on to a semi-guided walking tour of Lugang. First stop was the Lungshan Temple（龍山寺).
This Temple was by far my favorite stop of the day. It was absolutely beautiful - I couldn't stop taking pictures of it.
From the Lungshan Temple, we made our way to Old Market Street（古市街）
where we lazily meandered through narrow red-tiles streets lined with ancient buildings and lots and lots of vendors. I really love all of the old doors on this street, they're fantastic.
As it was a weekday, there were hardly any tourists walking through the old streets, so we were able to take in all the sites and enjoy a nice relaxing stroll.
Lugang is famous for Oyster Omelets and Ox Tongue Cakes (牛舌餅). We weren't feeling in the mood for the Oyster Omelets again, but we did get the Ox Tongue Cakes. They are sweet flaky pastries which kind of taste like a soft, doughy sugar cookie, I really liked them.
We also bought some Chinese decorative fans as souvenirs. The fans were hand painted and after we purchased them, the shopkeeper (with an awesome comb-over) wrote some calligraphy on them for us so that they would look more beautiful. I'm not sure what it says, but it was pretty cool.
Our walking tour ended at the Tienhou Temple （天后宮).
All of the commercialization really put me off at first, but once you actually go into the temple, it is quite a relaxing and beautiful place.
Lugang is a photographer's dream, although my attempt to capture it is amateur at best. I really had a great day lazily walking through the town and soaking in all the sights.