Tuesday, October 27, 2009

more about food

confession - we eat out a lot here. and by a lot, i mean... maybe 5 nights a week. i'm pretty sure i'd eat out 7 nights a week if allison let me. not that we can defend going out that much, especially after cooking so much at home, but i'll try. as vegans, the food here is super cheap. actually, most food is cheap, but the vegetables are cheaper. currently, you can get about 33 new taiwanese dollars (NT$) for 1 US$, which helps (i think... not sure how that works). also, our kitchen is really small and narrow and we don't have an oven. ok, i know those were weak points, but the food is reallllly good.

we live really close to three or four restaurants. there is a thai place, with an english menu, near us called thai yun (first one on the page) that has great water spinach, spicy green beans (best ever), fried tofu with garlic piled on top, and some fried cabbage that allison loves. the only thing holding this back from being our "cheers" is that they can't speaking english, so they don't know our name. right next door to that, there is a japanese place (see: stanky tofu experience) with an english speaking waiter who helps us out. this place has silken tofu, which isn't allison's favorite, but quite a few vegetable options. i think the best part about this one is the atmosphere (pictures later). a couple restaurants down, there is a vegetarian dumpling place (that are boiled, not fried). we'll get to the fried goodness in a second) we had our friend's girlfriend (who speaks/reads chinese) translate the whole menu for us, so we're able to order anything we want. 10 dumplings = US$ 1.33, which is crazy. allison usually gets wonton soup with it and we usually end up spending around $5 for dinner and lunch the next day. my favorite thing about this place is the lady/owner/cook there pretends like i can understand chinese. if it isn't charades, then i don't want to play. she likes to speak chinese a million words a minute to me and then repeat a world 10 times, trying to get the point across. accidentally ordered sauteed and boiled water spinach at the same time. she really didn't want me to get it, but i did she was right. i should learn chinese. in addition to those three restaurants, there are about 10 small little street food carts that are along the side of the road within three or blocks both directions of us. i usually go to one owned by a brother and sister that is amazing. all of it is fried, so we try not to eat there too often (but it is so good, so i go too often). they have fried tofu, gelatin fries, sweet potatoes (sprinkled with strawberry-y sugar), rice brats, broccoli, green beans, corn on the cob... yes, fried, and a lot of other meaty items that scare me. i usually have them smother mine in their chili powder stuff and allison opts for a sweet kind of sprinkled stuff. lately, i've brought the brother, who is around my age, a beer and he has a big smile on his face and then gives me a bunch of stuff for free. i've been using google translator on my phone to tell them things and asking questions, but it is pretty funny because they can't reply back to me.

also... about ten minutes away from us, we've been hitting up indian food once a week. we're currently addicted to a place called little india moslem restaurant. they have five or six veg dishes and each one comes with naan and rice. everything tastes great and we usually get some to take for lunch the next day. another place, a little closer to us, is a place called loving hut which is a chain of restaurants throughout the world with pretty cheap set meals. other than that, we're looking forward to trying spring natural vegetarian restaurant in the next couple of weeks. anyone that is reading this in taiwan know if any other good places to go?

since there are no resources for vegan restaurants in taichung (that are in english) i'm going to start a review blog of the places we go to and try to go to a new one each week or month. i'll plan on posting a few pictures of the places i've mentioned here once i get it going. i'll probably get that going this week and will post the link.  hopefully it will kind of look like stumptown vegans food review site, but we all know it won't.

few random pictures.

sign shop in taichung (looks fun, right virgil?)

morning traffic
rest stop sighting on the way to taipei for volleyball

still love our car
(and spending $75 on gas per month instead of $375)


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  2. Jeremiah, I couldn't even finish reading this, because my mouth started to water at cheap, delicious, vegan food. Sigh. I love your car too. You are brave to drive there. I'd never drive here.

  3. whoa... $375 per month on gas!?!?

    Love the taiwan foodie posts! We have loving hut here in Seattle too. Qing Hai's desciples make great vegan pho!

  4. Yes, this post made me hungry! I love reading about this! And, now because of our time change~ I think we are now 16 hours different? Would that be right? Love you~ Mom

  5. livin la vida - food is amazing. the main reason i want to start chinese classes is to be able to tell them what i want. also, driving was a little chaotic at first, but now you just go with the flow. not looking forward to driving back at home and having to follow real rules.

    brett - yeah, portland to salem adds up! i just new about vegan supreme tv (or whatever it is called) because they had it playing at a vegan chinese place at home. not bad food for the price.

    mom - see you soon! and you're right. +16 for us now :) xo