Ate In Taiwan. Taiwanese OG Cuisine: Rooster Testicles, Baby Eel & Betelnut. Aboriginal Taiwanese Cuisine in Kaohsiung City, Taiwan.
Grilled, gigantic prawns.
The Amis, Tao, Paiwan, Kavalan, among others are the tribes that make up some of Taiwan's Aboriginal population. When the Han Chinese settled in Taiwan at the start of the 17th century, Taiwanese Aboriginal culture and cuisine was in danger of slowly fading into extinction.
However, in the past few years, a vigorous campaign funded by the Taiwanese government to revive the island's OG culture and cuisine helped spread interest in these ancient traditions and food.
One highlight of my many Taiwanese food adventures was most definitely a gluttonous visit to an Aboriginal restaurant in downtown Kaohsiung City.
Thanks to my brother Warren's business partner and my older cousins, I indulged in the comestibles of the Taiwanese Aboriginal mountain and ocean tribes at a famous local Aboriginal restaurant.
Balls & basil.
Some of the Aboriginal eats included wild boar ribs and sausages grilled to a smoky sweetness, baby eel encased in deep fried batter, and bulbous, bursting-at-the-seams, rooster balls with fried ginger and basil.
KFC = Kaohsiung Fried Chitlins!
In between nibbles, a potent rice alcohol served on ice washed down all the greasy, tasty tidbits like the fried pig intestines.
For dessert, however, I wasn't offered some kind of pedestrian plate of sweets. Instead I got a high octane, after dinner pick-me-up better than any espresso. It was the legendary betelnut. A powerful stimulant so addictive that the Taiwanese government is publicly expressing concern about its widespread use and popularity.
Betelnut, the overindulger's do over.
But for me, it was exactly what the party doctor ordered. The betelnut virtually erased all the dulling effects from the gallons of Taiwan Beer and rice alcohol I tippled.
Like pressing a "reset" button, the magic of the betelnut gave us the power to party on and on and on 'til the break o' dawn cuz that's how the Taiwan OG do.
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