a teacup of taiwan

food food food
when it comes to food, i'm game for trying anything--assuming there is no potential health risk, of course. for example, i've heard that the puffer fish is poisonous and must be prepared carefully and specifically by someone who knows what they're doing; otherwise, you'll end up dead. do you see what i'm getting at here? i'm not going to "be adventurous" and put my life in the hands of a *hopefully* well-trained chef. so besides unsafe foods, i'll try anything. i don't promise to love it, but i'll try it. while in taiwan, we tried various dishes; sometimes i asked what they were, other times i didn't. here are some visual examples of my taiwanese food experiences. enjoy!
1. have you ever wondered what poultry guts look like? yeah, me neither. well here they are in all their glory. these were on display at a typical morning market in taiwan.
2. mastering the art of chopstickery. in the states, i'm usually so hungry by the time my food arrives, i don't want to fiddle with learning how to use chopsticks. i ask for a fork and that's it. when in rome....or should i say, when in taiwan....do as the taiwanese do. i got to the point where it felt natural to be eating with chopsticks and i quite liked it. now that i'm back home, i'm back to using forks and knives. 
3. roadside restaurant before the lunch rush.
4. miss jasmine with a tasty treat. it's really hard to describe, but it was strawberry-flavored and squishy.
5. jasmine and i ate at an amazing seafood restaurant. this fish was SO good!
6. on the left is ostrich. on the right are squid balls. both were divine. the ostrich tasted like beef; the squid tasted like squid.
7. typical taiwanese beef dish.
8. more seafood. the food on the right were about the size of your fingernail and you had to suck out the insides. not bad, but kind of a hassle because they were so small.
9. i want one of these right now. shaved vanilla ice cream (awesome texture) loaded with all kinds of fruit. you can get it with any topping you like. very refreshing.
10. first restaurant we ate at. the chef on the right is also the owner. he made some good eats.
11. some of his work. i ate pig intestines here; they had a fatty texture which really wasn't my thing.
12. ice cream break.
13. night market food vendor. i felt bad for her because she was vigorously working alone. i wanted to pull up a chair and tell her to take a rest.