Food

Taiwanese street dishes: 5 to try in Los Angeles

LAUNCH PHOTO GALLERY: Taiwanese street dishes: 5 to try in Los Angeles

The great thing about living in L.A. is the foreign street cuisine that’s readily available. Having gone to popular night markets in Taiwan (an island country in East Asia, located off the southeastern coast of China) like Raohe Street, Huaxi Street and Shilin, and eaten some of the most distinguished Taiwanese street foods, we knew what to look for here in L.A. County and the San Gabriel Valley. Here are 5 Taiwanese street dishes to try that don’t require a passport.

Taiwanese restaurants

101 Cafe
2763 S. Diamond Bar Blvd.
Diamond Bar, CA 91765
909.595.9100

Class 302
1015 S. Nogales St. #125
Rowland Heights, CA 91748
626.965.5809

Ju Ju Shine
1631 W Carson St.
Torrance, CA 90501
310.782.8988

My Way Deli
735 W. Garvey Ave.
Monterey Park, CA 91754
626.284.6638

Plaza Deli
18920 Gale Ave.
Rowland Heights, CA 91748
626.810.7838

Simbala Restaurant
18489 Colima Rd.
Rowland Heights, CA 91748
626.581.9885

651 W. Duarte Rd. Ste F
Arcadia, CA 91007
626.446.0886

(Bring cash, as many of these restaurants do not take credit cards)

5. Zong Zi – Rice Dumpling

This item consists of glutinous rice with Chinese sausage, mushrooms, chunks of braised pork, chestnuts, and sometimes a salted egg yolk, wrapped and steamed in bamboo leaves to achieve its pyramid-esque shape. This delightful entree is enjoyed with a sweet chili sauce.

4. Small Intestines

A simple cold dish of steamed pork small intestines that has a chewy and slightly crunchy texture. Served with fresh julienne ginger and a sweet garlic soy paste sauce to brighten the flavor and cut the gaminess.

3. Oh Ah Jian – Taiwanese Oyster Pancake/Omelet

Similar to an omelet, this dish consists of steamed oysters and Chinese lettuce, for a crunch factor, on top of an omelet egg base. Over the oysters and Chinese lettuce is a gelatinous layer of sweet potato or tapioca starch and served with a sweet chili sauce.

2. Bah Wan – Taiwanese Meatball

This delicacy consists of a pork meatball with braised shitake mushroom and diced bamboo shoots wrapped and steamed in a thick and chewy ‘skin’ made of rice and sweet potato starch comparable to a chewier mochi. It is typically served with a sweet chili sauce and garnished with cilantro.

1. Pig’s Blood Cake

Contrary to the presumed gaminess of this dish, the pig’s blood cake is a delicate dish made of steamed glutinous rice and pig’s blood typically served on a skewer reminiscent of a lollipop or popsicle. The rice cake is then dipped in sweet soy sauce and encased in a peanut powder and cilantro mixture.

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