Taiwan(3) — Taipei @Ice-Monster

 Ice-monster

After you go to Din Tai Fung for dinner, you should go to the dessert restaurant, ice-monster, that near it. A lot of Taiwan travel magazines have introduced this dessert restaurant. Since 1995, strawberries’ ice shaving and mangos’ ice shaving became the most famous dessert in Yong Kang street. Ice-monster also gained the award of “The best red bean soup.” This restaurant created some special hot dessert for winter as well, such as ginger soup with sweet potato, tangyuan (stuffed dumplings made of glutinous rice flour served in soup), etc.

The characteristics of Ice-monster are to provide seasonal and fresh fruits. Therefore, they can’t cut more mangos and/or berries than the orders. Secondly, the sweet and sour proportions of every dessert has to be balanced. The employer of Ice-monster believed that the best flavor of all kinds of fruits should contain appropriated fruit acids. Too sweet or too sour would lose the original flavor of the fruit. As a result, different ice shavings which served with fresh fruits, sauce, ice-cream, and evaporated milk have attracted numerous of visitors.

My Rating:  

The commercial of Ice-monster:

(Subtitle): The famous mango ice shaving in Ice-monster attracts a lot of visitors; The most popular is the ice shaving served with 3 different fruits and 3 ice-cream balls; We also have a lot of others delicious desserts; Here’s I introduce to you all — Ice-monster in Taipei City.

Address:

 

Published in: on January 31, 2008 at 3:55 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Taiwan(2) — Taipei @Din Tai Fung Dumpling Restaurant (B)

Din Tai Fung Restaurant is using her own computer system to control 10 stoves’ steaming processes. Every staff has to follow each step exactly in order to maintain every xiao long bao is in a superior quality. The cook used a small round paste and rolled as the skin of xiao long bao. The standard diameter of each skin has to be 6.5 centimeter and 5 grams. The pork fillings have to be 16 grams. The total weight has to be between 20.6 to 21.4 grams. Overweight or underweight have to re-make. Each xiao long bao has to fold in 18 folds, and then put 10 xiao long bao(s) in the stove and steam for 4 to 4.5 minutes. As a result, all customers are able to have the xiao long bao in 5 minutes after they ordered.

This is the commercial of Din Tai Fung:

(Subtitle) Making xiao long bao skillfully; Attract numerous people everyday; Most of the foreign visitors come to Taiwan because of this restaurant; Xiao Long Bao; Steamed Shrimp dumpling; Fried rice with shrimp; Chicken soup; This is the restaurant that ranked as one of the world’s top 10 restaurants by The New York Times; A lot of international super stars came here; [Japanese visitor] The xiao long bao is really juicy and delicious; Every dumpling is in 18 folds; Here’s the famous restaurant in Taipei City – Din Tai Fung.

Making Xiao long Bao:

How to eat???

Published in: on January 30, 2008 at 7:36 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Taiwan(2) — Taipei @Din Tai Fung Dumpling Restaurant (A)

 Din Tai Fung Dumpling Restaurant

Din Tai Fung Dumpling Restaurant was ranked as one of the world’s top 10 restaurants in 1993 by The New York Times. It has gained reputation internationally because of its juicy pork dumplings (Xiao Long Bao). And according to the survey done by Taiwan Ministy of Economic Affairs, the Xiao Long Bao in this restaurant is the top 4 favorite foods for western people.Din Tai Fung was founded by Yang Bingyi from Shanxi more than 50 years ago as a cooking oil retailer. Due to a fierce competition in that sector, it switched to trade in Xiao Long Bao in the 1980s. In 1996, Japanese Din Tai Fung Restaurant was opened in Shinjuku, Tokyo. Xiao Long Bao immediately turned into a great mass fervor. As a result, “Din Tai Fung” became a code word of “Xiao Long Bao.” In addition, outside Taiwan, Din Tai Fung Restaurant distributes throughout the world, such as in mainland China, Japan, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, South Korea, and the United States. Although Din Tai Fung distributed in different countries, numerous Chinese and Japanese would still go to the Taipei’s Din Tai Fung when they visit Taiwan. Japanese visitors have nearly engaged above 1/3 of customers of Din Tai Fung restaurant. A lot of international super stars, governors, etc, go to this restaurant as well. Therefore, in order to serve the unceasing customers and to reduce the waiting time, there are already 3 Din Tai Fung restaurants in Taipei. Besides, every waiter is using wireless microphone, thus to save the customers’ time and mistakes. The most important, of course, is each store remains the high quality of foods. This working process became one of the characteristics of Yong Kang Street as well. 

 Xiao Long Bao — There are 3 flavors of Xiao Long Bao, the only different is only the fillings insides. All 3 varieties contained beautifully thin skins and juicy fillings. My favorite is the crab meat xiao long bao which stuffed with plenty of crab. This xiao long bao is simply and fantastic, you are able to taste the crab and pork. The skins are nearly semi-transparent, and with the juicy inside, it is extremely delicious. You can totally understand why the xiao long bao in this restaurant got a lot of awards. Naturally the Xiao Long Bao is served with the traditional vinegar and ginger dipping sauce.

 Beef noodle — My favorite all-time favorite! I’ve eaten beef noodle soups from countless restaurants and the beef noodle in Din Tai Fung is one of my favorites which I have to order every time. Their beef noodle soup is very unique, unlike every other beef noodle soup out there. The taste of the beef soup is really natural, which is strong and salty. The noodles are firm to the bite as well.  Chicken noodle soup:  It’s pretty good, but not as good as their beef noodle. However, if you want to try some clear soup base, this is a good one.

 Fried pork chop – Thin and not chewy, served pepper after fried the pork chop is really good.

 Pork moon cake — The outside is crunchy and crispy, and with the pork inside, it is pretty good.

 Ba Bao Fan(eight treasures rice): A rice dessert dish mix with read bean, slides of  papaya, longan, slides of winer melon, lotus seeds, glutinous rice, etc.  A lot of people said that Ba Bao Fan is a really healthy food since it contains various fruits in it.

My Rating:

Addresses: 

1) No.194, Sec. 2, Sinyi Rd. (Yong Kang Street in), Da-an District, Taipei City10651, Taiwan (R.O.C.)

Tel: (02) 2321-8928

Service Hours: 10:00 – 21:00 (Mon-Fri); 09:00 – 21:00 (Sat and holiday)

2) No. 218, Sec. 4, Jhongsiao E. Rd. (Turn in No. 216), Da-an District, Taipei City 10692, Taiwan (R.O.C.)

Tel: (02) 2721-7890

Service Hours: 10:30-14:00; 16:00-22:00 (Mon-Fri); 10:00-22:00 (Sat and holiday)

3) No. 300, Sec.3, Jhongsiao E. Rd. (SOGO Mall B2), Da-an District, Taipeit City 10654, Taiwan (R.O.C.)

Tel: (02) 8772-0528

Service Hours: 10:00-21:30 (Sun-Thur); 10:00-22:00 (Fri-Sat, days before holiday)

Taiwan(1) — Taipei @Yong Kang Beef Noodles

Well…I think it’s time to leave Hong Kong and depart to our next station, Taiwan.

 

Taiwan has tons of delicious and traditional foods. Many people travel to Taiwan mainly because of the local food. Taiwan Ministry of Economic Affairs done a survey in 2007, first they vote for 15 different Taiwanese dishes and 10 traditional snacks through online internet. Then found 50 western people to choose the best 10 of those foods. Beef Noodle is one of the best 10 favorite’s foods of western people.

 Yong-Kang Beef Noodle Restaurant

Yong-Kang Beef Noodle restaurant is one of the most famous restaurants in Yong Kang Street. Yong Kang Street is located in Taipei City, which is one of the famous streets of food shops. Since the street contains several traditional restaurants and snack’s shops, thus it gradually opened many western style restaurants, coffee shops, etc. Because of those restaurants, the street attracted a lot of visitors as well.

In early period, it is only a street vendor near “Yong Kang Street.”  The vendor is a demobilized soldier. The characteristic of the noodle is because of the special thick broad-bean chili sauce (Dou Ban Jiang). While his noodle became more and more popular, thus he opened this beef noodle restaurant. The beef noodle at the present is rich in Szechwan style, which is a cuisine featuring liberal use of hot pepper and strong seasonings. All the soup bases are cook naturally and without condiment.

 Braised Beef Noodles – This is the popular dish in this restaurant. The soup base is a little bit spicy. Although they put the broad-bean chili sauce, it didn’t taste really salty. The noodle is firm to the bite. The beefs are the essence of the noodle. Beefs are not chewy but full with the taste of the soup base.

 Clear-broth Stewed Beef Noodles – If you do not like spicy soup base, this is a good one for you. Without the strong flavor of the soup, the clear-broth would able to bring out the taste of the beefs more.

 Steamed Spareribs with Rice Flour – This is special snack. The granules on the top are garlic and rice. Under the spareribs are sweet potatoes. I think this is a very special snack, since the portion of this is not too much, and it’s a good one to try.

 Braised Beef Tendon – The beef tendon is firm to a bite and will melt immediately when you put in your mouth. The braised sauce is not too strong so didn’t cover the taste of beef. With some green (or spring) onion and garlic will enrich the beef tendon.  Antipasto: Eggplant – This one is with a special sauce, and not spicy either.

 Antipasto: Chinese pickled vegetables – The pickled vegetables added Sichuan pepper (Hua Jiao: “Flower pepper”). It is a good appetizer since it is sour.

My rating:

Address:No.17, Lane 31, Sec. 2, Jinshan South. Rd.Da-an District, Taipei City 10650, Taiwan (R.O.C.)

Tel: (02) 2351-1051

Service Hours: 11am – 9:30 pm

Published in: on January 28, 2008 at 10:10 pm  Comments (1)  
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Hong Kong — Dessert (2)

Tofu pudding is one of a Chinese desserts made with some soft form of tofu. In Chinese, it’s known as Dou Fu Fa (豆腐花). There are two flavors of this dessert, savory and sweet. Northern Chinese people and Taiwanese are having savory tofu pudding. Guangdong people are having sweet tofu pudding.

In Hong Kong cusisine, it is served with sweet ginger or clear syrup.Traditionally it made in a wooden bucket, which is known as “Dau Fu Fa in wooden bucket (木桶豆腐花).” You would able to see this wooden bucket in some traditional Chinese restaurant, some Chinese restaurants in China-town as well, as one of the dim sums. Tofu pudding is best eat in hot. However, a lot of restaurants and markets would serve cold tofu pudding. Hot Dau Fu Fa is served with sweet ginger, and cold one is serve with clear syrup.

 

There are several cuisines that people would like to serve with the tofu pudding. The traditional is sweet ginger. Others may mix it with black sesame paste, which is known as “Black & White”, while half of the bowl is tofu pudding, and the other half is black sesame paste. Sometimes would mix it with red bean soup, which people will call it “Red & White.”  Others may mix it with mung bean soup, which people will refer it as “Green & White.” Also, you can mix with “Taro Sai mai lo” which is a dessert soup with taro, peral tapioca, coconut and evaporated milk, people will call this mixture as “Purple & White.” Nowadays, many shops will create various flavors, such as mixed with different kinds of fruits, jelly, or other kinds of tranditional Chinese desserts. Although there are different fusion, I think the traditional one with sweet ginger is the best.

You are able to have this dessert in any dessert shops, Chinese restaurants, and HK-style tea restaurants.  

Famous places for Dou Fu Fa:

1)       Lantau Island, N.T.

2)       G/F, Yung Shue Wan Back Street, Lamma Island, N.T.

3)       No 40A, G/F, Yue Man Square, Kwun Tong, Kowloon.

Shops that create various flavors of Dou Fu Fa:

1)       A4, G/F, 96 Electric Road, Tin Hau, Hong Kong. Tel: (851) 2508-6962

2)       No 8, Haven Street, Causeway Bay, HK. Tel: (852) 2915-0099

 Hot Dou Fu Fa served with sweet ginger

  Cold Dou Fu Fa served with clear syrup

My Rating:

Published in: on January 26, 2008 at 7:30 pm  Leave a Comment  

Hong Kong — Dessert (1) @Golden Mall Dessert

After all the main-courses which I have introduced in previous entries, it’s time for dessert! The selling point of this dessert’s restaurant is HEALTHY. All desserts are less sugar, less sweet, and less calorie, which is best satisfy with people, especially ladies, who love dessert and also concern with their health.

The main characteristic of this restaurant is fusion. They are mixing Chinese dessert with western dessert.

Addresses:

1) No 9, South Wall Road, Kowloon City, Kowloon. Tel: (852) 2383-3102

2) No 201, G/F, Amoy Plaza, Ngau Tau Kok, Kowloon. Tel: (852) 2751-8900

  Coffee jelly with sorbet– If you’re fans of coffee, you should try this dessert. Coffee ice-cream with nut and coffee jelly create a strong flavor of coffee.

 Maltesers’ flavor Law Mi Chi – “Law Mi Chi” is made by glutinous rice, which is a little bit chewy. It is a bite-size, chocolate power served outside and a Maltesers chocolate ball inside. However, Maltesers is not my favorite, it’s a bit too sweet for me.

 Pink Lady – “Pink lady” is the name of this dessert. There’s sorbet in the bottom, serve with coconut jelly and strawberry on the top.

 Durian pudding – Durian pudding with durian fruits inside. You can serve with coconut jelly or  “peral”, which make the pudding more chewy and bring out the taste of durian.

My Rating: