Experience the Best of Taiwan’s Diverse Cuisine in the Heart of Manhattan

On Dec 8th, AsianInNY was invited by the Press Division of the Taipei Economic and Cultural Office in New York (TECO-NY) to attend “Taiwan Culinary Night” as a way to celebrate the official launching of Government Information Office’s (GIO) new website taiwanfoodculture.net dedicated to Taiwan’s diverse food culture.  Nine representative dishes were served at the event in order to give New Yorkers an opportunity to taste and experience the many facets of Taiwanese food in the heart of Manhattan.

Taiwan (台灣) also known as Formosa, is the largest island of the same-named island group of East Asia in the western Pacific Ocean and located off the southeastern coast of mainland China. Food culture represents one face by which a country knows itself and by which it shows itself to the world and no doubt, Taiwanese cuisine is known to the world, especially the popular “night market” culture. Taiwan’s varied cuisine shows ethnic, geographic, economic, and other cultural influences.

The Press Division selected nine emblematic dishes for the evening’s guests: braised pork in steamed buns; steamed glutinous rice with red crab; lobster salad; sweet and sour sparerib; Hakka rice snacks and cakes; rice cooked in a bamboo stalk; sun cakes; and bubble tea.After

In addition to the spread, H.J. Jan, a renowned Taiwanese chef who won the gold medal in the 2008 IKA/Culinary Olympics and won first place in last month’s New York World Culinary Competition, used his unparalleled knife technique to carve intricate dragons out of fruit.

After the dinner, the Press Division also arranged a traditional tea ceremony to showcase Taiwanese tea culture, include tea arts, tea ceremony, and a very social way of enjoying tea. In Taiwan most people drink tea, and tea is not only a drink, but also a part of the culture.

This exclusive event was attended by close to a hundred guests, including international media groups like ABC, Wine Enthusiast Magazine, Japan’s Sankei Shinbun and Mainichi Shinbun, as well as famous food journalists and bloggers.

The GIO’s “Taiwan Culinary Culture Website” is divided into seven basic categories, which include Taiwanese street foods, Taiwanese cuisine, Taiwanese seafood, Chinese fusion, Hakka cuisine, indigenous cuisine, and traditional sweets and beverages. The website is accessible in Chinese, English, Japanese, Spanish now and will have German, French, Russian and Korean versions added later, making it possible for our culinary traditions to reach as many people internationally as possible. The website is meant to pique people’s interest in Taiwan’s food, heritage, and culture and encourage people to visit and try its delicious cuisine. The website is: http://taiwanfoodculture.net

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