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.
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.
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.
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.
Breads… because we love our carbs!
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!
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!