Breakfast in Taipei

Saturday morning we met Andy and Sugi in the lobby of our hotel (Park Taipei Hotel – highly recommended) and walked to a nearby restaurant for breakfast.  The section of Fu-Xing South Road near the hotel has many restaurants well-known for their breakfasts, some of which serve 24 hours a day.  Andy took us to Yong He Dou Jiang (永和豆漿) at the corner of RuiAn and Section 2, Fu-Xing South Road.

The first sign that this would be good eats was the queue stretching out the front door and onto the sidewalk.  There were two, in fact: one for food to-go (many people in that line were carrying their tiffins or, as I believe the Singaporeans call them, their tingkats) and the other for dine-in.

The kitchen is right at the front of the shop, open-air under with a glass wall and window facing the interior dining area.  This is a busy and efficient kitchen with each person performing their tasks in a compact area; no wasted motions here.  The menu has variations of no more than a dozen items, if that, so it is more of a production line than anything else.

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Our basic breakfast was four bowls of warm, sweetened soy milk, sesame pastry with fried “donut” inside, rice rolls (hidden under the sesame pastry), steamed Shanghainese style pork dumplings called xiao long bao, and some fried turnip cakes (not pictured).

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Soy milk is not something I generally enjoy drinking but for some reason I find that when I have it in Asia, it is much more enjoyable than when I have it in the US.  It isn’t chalky and there’s no artificial vanilla flavor added to it.  It is especially nice when using it to dip the pastries.

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The pastries, referred to colloquially as “Chinese donuts”, are thin strips of unsweetened dough that are fried up.  In Thailand, these are generally shorter pieces but here in Taiwan (and most other places I’ve had them) they are a good ten inches long.  The ones we had were wrapped in a thin sesame pasty.  You dunked it in the soy milk then took a bite.

The dumplings (in the background) are one of my favorites, although this particular restaurant’s were underseasoned.  They are made with a ground pork filling that has a small cube of gelatinous broth put inside the wrapper and then are steamed.  The broth liquifies and when you bite into it, you get a generous burst of “soup” with the meat.

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The other thing we had were rice rolls (kind of like sushi) wrapped around a Chinese donut and stuffed with a dried, shredded pork and pickled veggies.  Very tasty!

This proved a tasty and filling start to our drizzly day.

0 thoughts on “Breakfast in Taipei

  1. “Chi Fan” (rice rolls wrapped around a Chinese donut and stuffed with a dried, shredded pork and pickled veggies) is actually one of my favourite foods to eat in the morning or as a snack when I was in Vancouver.  Sadly, they don’t have them here in Winnipeg. =(

  2. Oh,I love those sweet warm soy milk too. There’s another kind which is salty and much more intense in flavour. Great for dipping with your donut. I wonder if they have this on the menu? The kitchen looks so neat!

  3. yum! it’s true, asian soy milk is so different (and so much better) than american soy milk. i love the chinese cruellers, and of course the xiao long bao and turnip cake (lo bak go) are so delicious !

  4. @osmundaregalis – Ohh my goodness… the things you’re having here are the exact things that I crave so much about waking up early in the morning and going out to breakfast in Taipei. Everything you have here is exactly what I order.In fact, I think I might know this place even.Jacquie, let’s go have this ok? 🙂

  5. Forgot to take a picture of the sign of the place haha. It’s one of the most well-known breakfast places in Taiwan. You say the name and everyone knows what it is.

  6. @ZSA_MD – @yang1815 – I’m going to ask Andy to answer your question, Zakiah.  Andy – do they have the chi fan with any other type of meat besides pork?  I’m thinking probably not.@murisopsis – As well you should.  Hope I can add a few more places to that list in the next few days.@yang1815 – If you have a chance to get the name of it, let me know.@chow@ireallylikefood – @osmundaregalis – Let’s arrange a xanga food meet-up in Taipei.  Just let me know when!@stebow – You should definitely go for a visit.@ElusiveWords – We had better ones on Sunday.  Stay tuned…@kunhuo42 – I wonder why they are so different?@CurryPuffy – There were many different types of the soy milk including the salted type.@Dezinerdreams – I’m sure you’ll get the opportunity.@TheCheshireGrins – Trying to figure out a way to send you some.  That might not work so well… 

  7. @christao408 – Nope to keep it simple they only have one kind of “rice ball” at this place.As for the name of the place, it’s called Yong He Dou Jiang with the dou jiang meaning “soy bean milk.” Yong He is a suburb in Taipei county.

  8. @christao408 – Yep! Usually breakfast places would only have one type of rice ball. However if you buy it from a street vendor (there’s an excellent one right by my house), they may have two choices of eggs and a few choices of proteins (this one in particular has dried pork, dried fish, and tuna).

  9. This post made me hungry!! =) My husband loves those xiao long baos. We can get them very easily here. Have never seen the donut wrapped like that before, though, nor am I a big fan of soy milk either.

  10. The rice roll used to be oblong shaped and called rice ball…recently…the vendors are shaving off cost and made them into rolls because they could save some material… :-

  11. @christao408 – Well the rice “ball” at this particular place has always been in the shape of a roll since when I was little. When it’s in the shape of a roll, the rice can wrap around the yo tiao more easily and that’s my suspected reason of them doing it that way.

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