Jiufen Old Street, Taiwan

I ate a lot of food in Taiwan. I had so much food that I had to split my blog post into two; the first part is all about street foods and night markets and the second part is a list of dishes that you can order in restaurants. Of course, there are some foods that can be found in both night markets and restaurants, such as noodles and pearl milk teas. I just grouped them based on where I had them.

Many restaurants in Taiwan have their kitchens openly displayed to the public, perhaps to attract potential customers by showing them how their dishes are prepared. I don’t see a lot of restaurants in the Philippines with this kind of setup. I think it’s quite clever, especially for those people who want to see how their food is prepared before being served to them.

Sun Moon Lake, Nantou, Taiwan

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Taiwan Street Food

Taiwan was one of those places that I had never thought of visiting despite its proximity to the Philippines. Admittedly, I didn’t know much about it prior to my trip aside from its famous skyscraper, the Taipei 101. Needless to say, I had no regret spending almost two weeks on this island because of one thing—food. Delicious, gratifying Taiwanese food.

Before deciding to go to this beautiful country, my initial choices of destination to take my holiday break were India, Vietnam, or Indonesia. I ended up going to Taiwan because it had the cheapest flights that I could find at that time. I am a frugal traveler which translates to I want things cheap. It was a fortunate accident, so to speak, because I had an amazing time discovering this nation that is rich in ancient history, friendly people, and delicious foods.

And delicious food it was! I was floored by the variety of tastes and flavors that this small country has to offer. Taiwanese street food is simply one of the best in the world. A myriad of Taiwanese dishes—greatly influenced by Chinese, Japanese, and other neighboring Asian countries—envelops every street and corner of every city and county on this tiny island. Each one boasts of its unique version or speciality. And for a good reason. Every food scene showcases the best and freshest ingredients that the local communities can offer to its hungry visitors.

Shilin Night Market
Shilin Night Market
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Lola’s Test Kitchen: BREVILLE SMART OVEN BOV800

After weeks of testing different recipes, I fell in love with the beautiful Breville Smart Oven BOV800. Let me tell you why.

The Breville Smart Oven is the first and only smart oven in the country. It’s bigger than a standard toaster, smaller than a regular oven, but has all their functions plus more.

Just a little background, Breville is a premium brand from Australia known as a maker of small kitchen appliances for more than 80 years. The brand created the original sandwich toaster and its name has become synonymous to the appliance, just like how the Hoover brand is associated with the vacuum cleaner. Breville also makes premium kitchen appliances, such as coffeemakers, juicers, food processors, and mixers. But today, I will be talking about their smart oven.

Baking is not exactly a piece cake (sorry for the pun), but it’s something that I’ve always wanted to learn. I have baked cookies and cupcakes and pasta before, and I do have a few tricks up my sleeve. But unlike cooking, I don’t bake regularly because it is a tedious, precise food preparation, and it takes lots of patience, practice, and so many tools.

I’ll talk about the outcome of my test recipes later, but for now, check out the slides below and find out what features and accessories come with the Breville Smart Oven:

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