Vegetarian Delights in Taiwan

I went to Hong Kong a couple of years ago and distinctly remember struggling for vegetarian food. No one understood the concept of no fish and no meat except for those who cooked for the monks. As I packed my suitcase for Taiwan, I wondered if Taiwan would be a repeat of the same… and whether all my meals would be limited to rice with some sort of sauce, which would surely have some traces of fish or sea food.
Well, I couldn’t have been more wrong … I had some of the most delightful Asian food that I have ever had in Taiwan. Here is what kept my taste buds and tummy happy while I was in Taiwan…

Hot pot … simmering healthy food

I had a hot pot almost everyday. I cooked my food in the broth on the table and I did a pretty good job! The vegetables were cooked, yet retained a bite.

Vegetables for the hot pot

Vegetables for the hot pot

The silky tofu melted in the mouth. I ate to my heart’s content, yet never felt overfull. It was healthy and tasty too … a combination that is hard to believe!

Mock meat…the perfect substitute 

Trust me, if I did not have food connoisseurs with me, who swore that what I was eating was indeed mock meat, I would have thought that I was eating pork with local sauces.

Mock meat preparation

Mock meat preparation

Apparently, the meat eaters enjoy mock meat as much as vegetarians do… it looks and tastes like meat, hence the name… maybe even better!

Usually, I can’t sample typical flavours of a local cuisine as many dishes have meat as their prime protein. However, in Taiwan, I sampled so much more… courtesy mock meat… with pineapples … in tangy thick sauce… with vegetables. Vegetarians will understand what I mean when I say ‘I felt liberated!’.

Fresh fruits… for the joy of fruit picking
The fertile soils of Taiwan support agriculture in the hinterlands. I had a great time picking grapes and tomatoes.

Time to pick some ripe grapes!

Time to pick some ripe grapes!

However, my favourite activity was picking passion fruits. I have never had passion fruit that was as good. I even packed half a dozen for the bus ride.

Passion fruits

Passion fruits

Breads… because we love our carbs!

I had some really interesting breads while I was in Taiwan, the steamed bun being my favourite! I really like the look of the spiral one with black sesame…they reminded me of a zebra.whatsapp-image-2016-12-22-at-10-27-58-pm-1

I also had a spiced flat bread that was exactly like the lachha paratha in India. It was served with some potato gravy and I was home sick no longer … it was like eating paratha with aloo ki subsi!whatsapp-image-2016-12-22-at-10-27-58-pm-8

Asian fare of dumplings, stir fried vegetables, noodles and rice… because you are in Asia!
You cannot visit South East Asia and not have dumplings, can you? I especially enjoy a basket of mixed dumplings the most … there is a surprise in every bite!whatsapp-image-2016-12-22-at-10-27-58-pm-6

And most certainly, there is a fanfare of stir fries on the menu. I particularly relished the beans and the mushrooms… crisp, fresh and delicious!whatsapp-image-2016-12-22-at-10-27-58-pm-2

Taiwan allayed all my worries regarding vegetarian food. I even put on some weight during my stay in this beautiful country, where every meal resulted in pampering the taste buds. Bon appetit everyone!

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10 Responses

  1. Jean

    It’s always difficult trying to explain food choices when you’re travelling. Great to see that Taiwan has so many vegetarian options. I’d love to eat those zebra buns

  2. This is great! I eat mostly vegetarian so I enjoyed reading it. I’ve never seen a passion fruit tree or picked it fresh like that – how funny. I love passion fruit 🙂 Thanks for sharing! I’ll pin it in case I make it to Taiwan.

  3. They all look yummy! Love the zebra bread and cooking your own hotpot. I am leaning towards becoming a vegetarian aswell, hardly ever eating meat anymore so its a great post to know what kind of foods there are out there!

  4. Those steamed buns look so good! One of my favorite things to eat. And those dumplings look amazing too. I had no idea there was so much yummy vegetarian food in Taiwan!

  5. I have eaten tofu meat which was cooked like a real meat here in the Philippines. I did not know that it was a vegetarian food at first because it looked very convincing that it was a meat dish. I liked it but it was very oily. I felt that it was heavily seasoned and with food additives. I am sure the food that you have tasted is very different. What is the name of the restaurant?

  6. I’m happy you found some delicious vegan food. Everything looks so delicious that even I (as a non-vegan) would be happy to dive in for a bite! Looks like a foodie destination.

  7. I’m a meat eater but I enjoy everything vegetarian, especially looking at the mock meat which I never tasted before quite looks tasty seeing it on the photo. Wow, putting on some weight on veges shows that you really loved it a lot!

  8. Okay, my mouth is legitimately watering after reading this hahaha. So awesome that you can find awesome vegetarian food! I’ve never seen bread like that before, and those dumplings look amazing!

  9. I’m not a vegetarian but all of that looks amazing. I would have never thought it would be hard to find vegetarian food in Hong Kong (I’ve never been) but glad to hear Taiwan had a good selection!

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