by Belle Wu
When you visit Tainan, you can’t miss the local food here. Where can you find it? At night, it’s in night markets; during the daytime, it’s in the alleys and markets. Guohua Street is one of the best locations for local food. It bears excellent memory of old Tainan people and local people. In recent years, it has become one of the must-visit tourist spots.
The flavor of Tainan tends to be a little sweeter than that of other cities in Taiwan, though Tainan locals might not recognize the fact. One reason for such sweetness was that only rich people could afford sugar in the old days. Therefore, the consumption of sugar was a symbol of the rich. Another reason was that there used to be a high quantity of sugar production in Tainan, and thus sugar was much more accessible here. Consequently, even the savory food in Tainan possesses a bit of sweet taste.
Here are some local foods that foodies shouldn’t miss.
Qiu’s Squid Rice Noodles Soup
Unlike traditional Taiwanese rice noodles, the rice noodles here are thicker, a little transparent, and al dente. Although the ingredients are so simple including only fresh squids, rice noodles, and broth, the taste of the squid rice noodle soup is surprisingly good.
Guabao is considered a “Taiwanese Burger." It is also called “Tiger bites Pig" because it looks like a tiger’s mouth biting a pig. The steamed bun is soft and tender. The stuffing is soy sauce braised pork belly, which you can choose from half-fat and half-lean or whole lean pork. If you dare, you should give pig tongue a try. On top of the meat are Taiwanese pickled cabbage and radish with the final touch of creamy peanut sauce. The taste combining savory, sweet, and sour amaze not only tourists but also the locals that have lived here for generations. You should give it a try.
Apart from the two mentioned above, there are tons of tasty food here, whether savory or sweet, waiting for your bites.
Here are some tips for visitors:
- Come with an empty stomach.
- Be patient. Delicious food is worth the wait. Avoid weekend crowds if possible.
- Share the local food with your friends; thus, it becomes even tastier, and you can try more kinds.