Proof that we've been to Taipei 101
Unfortunately going back in the city meant that there would be more visits to various local produce shops in Taiwan, and we would be cajoled into purchasing from them. One of them was the pearl centre.
In the end, convinced by its cell regeneration, medicinal properties and countless other properties, I bought S$100 worth of pearl powder. Equivalent to the plate below.
This is the machine which grinds the pearls into powder
The shop assistants warned that only natural pearls can be ground into powder for consumption, not those meant for jewellery.
The finished product
We were brought to another local produce shop, whose famous pineapple tarts have won a national award within Taiwan. We had the chance to sample them, and they certainly lived up to its name. A tip from Francis: they taste best after being microwaved. The shop also sold 'tai yang bing' translated 'sun biscuit', which is a wonderfully flaky, buttery pastry which I love more than the pineapple tarts. Unfortunately, no pictures, as we were too busy samping the many other pastries. Plentiful flavours abound - green tea, red bean, sesame and MANY more.
We spotted this placed in a corner of this shop. This is a 'tian lu', a Chinese mythical hybrid creature that resembles a winged lion with one horn. Its counter part is 'pi xiu' which has 2 horns. The Taiwanese strongly believed in their powers in feng shui. This tian lu is believed to prevent wealth from slipping away.
Remember the name of this shop!
Later in the same night, we visited the famous Shilin night market, coming up in the next post!