Yilan eats.

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Probably my favorite dish on this trip. Seafood stew with a milk base and lots of delicious vegetables, noodles and meat. Oh, man it was so good.

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Steak bites.

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Prawns and winter melon.

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Spare ribs.

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Sashimi.

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Yilan’s famous ice cream. If you ever get the chance to find this place, and it will be hard because I have no idea what it is called, have a heaping bowl of peanut and pineapple for me!

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Traditional savory taro cake with minced pork.

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Bitter melon and egg.

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Another of my favorite dishes, soft egg tofu in garlic sauce.

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Fresh bamboo shoots.

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Fish head stew.

Yilan.

Originally, a visit to Jiaoxi/Yilan (my mother’s hometown) wasn’t one of our “must do’s” but definitely a “should do” that we ended up getting to “do.” When I was younger, we always made mini-vacations of our limited days in Yilan, so this place holds some very happy memories from my childhood.

Yilan is set amid the country side of East Taiwan. Locals operate at a comfortable pace and are too hospitable for my own good – after a day of foot soaking, sight seeing and eating in quantities that I didn’t believe were possible, all I wanted to do was nap and then eat some more. Yilan is always a “must do,” Serena. Don’t forget.

A bus from Taipei’s Technology Building MRT station gets you here quickly.  Now the option of traveling through Taiwan’s longest tunnel (about eight miles) cuts the travel time from two hours down to only a half, so a day trip is more than feasible.

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Fresh fruit and tea after a heavy lunch.

Public foot bath park.

Wedding shoot.

To be delicious oranges.

My favorite fruit: Lian Wu.

Yilan San Qing Temple.

Night Market.

This summer we went to Seattle’s Night Market and Moon Festival held at Union Street Station. Unlike the night markets you find in Taiwan, Seattle’s was a mecca for food trucks and small/local shops to do business as they normally would during working hours or at a Farmer’s Market. Although it was fun, there was nothing very authentic about or different about the event.

On our trip, we were able to visit three authentic Taiwanese night markets: the famous Shilin Market in Taipei, a small market in Tainan, and Raohe Market in Taipei (up and coming – and popular for food). Although every market is different and has its own reputation, you will always find clothes, trinkets, art, pets (yes), food, games, toys, electronics and basically anything else you can really think of.

You’re not going to find any food trucks at these markets…

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