Eating Everything at Shilin Night Market

My wonderful friend Robin took me out again for a night of non-stop eating and bargain hunting at the famous Shilin Night Market. Night markets are big business in Taiwan, and there are dozens to choose from in Taipei alone. Shilin is highly regarded as the largest, busiest and most famous of all the night markets in the country. It sells a HUGE variety of goods. If you want it, Shilin’s got it.

The crowds at Shilin Night Market
The crowds at Shilin Night Market

We were there for one thing – food of course! I was super keen to get my hands on some amazing Taiwanese street specialties, and I was not disappointed. Having Robin with me was a massive help, as she was able to tell me what things were before I dove head first into trying them.

A lime jelly lemonade type of drink. So good.
A lime jelly lemonade type of drink. So good.
DUMPLINS. Well, more like steamed buns. Extremely oily and delicious fried buns actually. So good.
Pork Buns. So good.
Juice. So good.
Juice. So good.
Crispy custard-filled cakes. So good.
Crispy custard-filled cakes. So good.
STREET MEAT. So good.
STREET MEAT. So good.
Squid on a stick. So good.
Squid on a stick. So good.
Fried mushrooms. So good.
(Sorry for the terrible photo of) Fried mushrooms. So good.
STREET MEAT #2. So good.
STREET MEAT #2. So good.

Now let me tell you about this champion of chickens. This crumbed conquerer. This perfection of poultry. It was the biggest and best damn fried chicken I ever did have y’all. Piping hot and fresh from the fat frier, it is apparently pronounced “jee-pie” and if you want to try it, I’m afraid you’ll have to wait in line. We waited, and oh boy it was worth it. This piece of chicken was literally bigger than my face. At least twice the size of your average Aussie pub schnitzel. In the picture below, I’m not lifting the chicken up out of the bag at all, it really was that massive. And so, so, so good.

And don’t you dare try to tell me about calories and cholesterol because not a single f@#k was given.

Giant chicken. So good.
Giant chicken. So good.

Of course I couldn’t come to Taiwan without trying the infamous Stinky Tofu. Or should I say, Robin wouldn’t let me leave Taiwan without trying the infamous Stinky Tofu. This stuff really, really stinks. Really bad. Eye-wateringly bad. Like an old, homeless man’s junk. We searched what felt like the whole market, and eventually found a stall that smelled mild enough that I would come out of this experience alive. Did I mention the reason it smells so bad is because they let the tofu ROT before they cook it? Yep, rotten tofu. Pretty appetizing. I took a very tentative first bite and was surprised to discover that it’s actually not horrible! Definitely not tasty by any means and I wouldn’t order it again, but certainly edible.

Stinky tofu. Not good.
Stinky tofu. Not good.

Again, a massive thank you must go to Robin for showing me around Taipei’s best night market. I would have been lost without her!

Next post will be my Seoulful (get it?) adventures in South Korea!

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