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2011年9月6日 星期二

A Day at Jiufen (九份)

After the public bus to Jiufen (九份), one of the "must visit" places whenever one visits Taipei, my eyes were greeted by a blue "cuttlefish" flying in the wind at the corner of a twisting road. It belonged to the "King of Cutttefish"


I did not see a king though. Only a smiling young lady. It smelt good.



Then I saw something one of the fellow bloggers must love.



"Henry Cat's & Friends", Two cats, one dog! Then all kinds of tiny shops selling cakes, biscuits,
puffs and candies.



A woman busy packing her Chinese "puff" pastry.





"Bite size" puffs with sesame, green bean, red bean, almond, peanut stuffings. And shops
selling dried or preserved fruits.





Yellow cherries.


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Dried cherry tomatoes and "pipless" preserved prunes with all kinds of condiments





Sweet preserved prunes





"Pipless" black preserved olives.





Dried "Buddhist hand" mandarin oranges.





"Green Tea" prunes.





"coffee" prunes and "Snow White" crispy prunes.

A little further down were stalls selling hot snacks. The most common were snacks from sea
food like meat of fish, octopus or beef or sausages.





All kinds of sausages, fish eggs, squid even glutinous rice sausages!







Or wild boar pork sausages




Or fried meat balls.





Or baked snails





All kinds of fish balls, octopus balls, and meat balls laid out for display, to be cooked instantly
in hot soups upon order.





Shark balls, fish broth, "royal" balls with cut noodles.




"Ice-Drip" Coffee!





If "ice-drip coffee" is not your "cup of tea", then there're something much
more Chinese: sour prune juice, green herb tea, and winter melon tea.





Or even "honey basil seed tea". A girl trying to hard sell me. But just not
her day!




Neither did this older lady selling honey chrysanthemum tea. The reason is not hard to find.




This is what the "honey chrysanthemum tea cake" looks like.





Nor did I feel like having some tea in this "arty" tea house with exhibitions of Chinese ink painting
within. I had been there many years ago.




A stall selling "black sugar old ginger tea".


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One sip of  the "dragon eye" ginger tea" and I was caught!





But much too early for bean curd custard with fruits.





Neither was I in the mood for a morning drink.





Hot and cold "taro balls" in sweet soup.





The master chef preparing his "taro balls".





One of the famous "taro ball" soup dessert stalls





The cook answering a question: Sorry, I'm afraid that's all I can do! All prices are fixed!





A store for dolls advertising that even antique "Chin Servants" are
"negotiable"!





A shop selling paper fan, all kinds of Chinese ink brushes with ink stands brush-holders etc.
Something more than just food culture!.





All brushes on display with stands and all.





Fried "bean curd buns"





Two waitress-cum-cooks at a fish ball stall. Next to it was a stall selling all kinds of fried bean
curd in all kinds of flavors.





A master chef concentrating on adding fish ball to a container.




Fried bean curd in 'hot" sauce.




Fried bean curds in sweet sauce.





Fried bean curd strips




More fried bean curds in strips.





A lady cook grating peanut powder off a peanut cake upon which tiny pieces of cut scallions
would be sprinkled upon a piece of round rolled flour at a "old" noodle shop.





A stall selling "honey cakes".





The "honey cake " won the first of the ten top prizes for "hand-carry" gifts by by the county.




A restaurant specializing on all kinds of "fermented bean curd", spicy or non-spicy according
to taste and with taro balls, mushroom balls with or without "dragon's eyes". And mushroom balls,
taro balls, dragon eyes, hot or cold, just so long as you pay.





Another stall advertising "antique" method of preparing the fermented
bean curds by roasting.






A stall specializing black sugar cake.





A stall specializing in selling crispy bamboo shoots. Looks quite spicy.





A stall specializing in all kinds of tiny dried fish and dried shrimps.





A shop selling what has now becoming famous i.e. red "alcohol dregs" pork cake.





"Mr Just" stall selling Shantung braised pork bun. But I was attracted by something else.





But when I took a look, I wasn't convinced that was the right place. I went instead to another.





It was opened by a legendary woman: an abandoned child who first became a barmaid, got married
and then started her shop upon her husband's death.




Here's she is. She has a newspaper article about her legendary rise to fame which she prominently
displayed inside her shop. I asked for permission to photograph her. She was surprisingly "obliging"!
Doesn't she look really happy? So was I.