By far one of my favorite meals in Taiwan was an unexpected stop at a breakfast stand on Kaishan Road in Tainan. Yung Chi is a popular spot with the locals. For very little money you can get a very hearty, authentic Taiwanese breakfast. Here's what I had: Yo Tiao (a savory churro type bread), pork rice (with pork liver, not my favorite), duck eggs "“ I preferred the soft cooked over the hard cooked; milkfish balls"“ think gefilte fish. The fish balls came in a broth in which they were accompanied by fish stomachs and fish skin. And, of course, a never empty cup of tea to accompany the meal.
Mr. Liu, is the gregarious third generation owner of the establishment. His grandfather opened Yung Chi 80 years ago. Yung Chi is open from 6:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. serving breakfast and lunch only. Mr. Liu contracts with a local milkfish farmer for the fish. Milkfish, I'm told, is the most popular fish in Taiwan.
It is a very bony fish as well, so Mr. Liu also contracts with a team of people who filet the fish before delivering it daily to the little restaurant. This very satisfying breakfast is a great way to soak up the local culture and get a look at a less touristy side of Taiwan.
Marsha Lenox is a writer and freelance editor. Her articles and essays on travel, roller derby and homeschooling have been featured in newspapers, magazines and on numerous websites and blogs. Marsha writes and performs creative non-fiction stories for Story Salon, the longest running storytelling venue in Los Angeles. She is also a roller derby referee.