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COMPASS MAGAZINE > December 2010

Warming up the winter with Guandong 'Tian-Bu-La'--Lan Tian Guandong Tien-Bu-La, Ji Jiang Japanese Guandong Tien-Bu-La, Shun Kou Japanese Guandong Tien-Bu-La, Hao Quan Cheng Vegetable Guandong Tien-Bu-La

By Niang Chen
Translated by Sho Huang


Lan Tian Guandong Tien-Bu-La



Lan Tian Guandong Tien-Bu-La

206, HuaMei St
(04) 2305-8355
Hours: 11 am-8 pm
(closed Sundays)

This restaurant's friendly, easy-going owner, You Guo-hua, invented his very own broth which includes dried fish, turnips, mushrooms and fresh vegetables. After two hours of simmering, all the flavors from the ingredients are released into the broth, making it delicious and healthy without the need for any added MSG or artificial seasonings. The end result is popular among younger female customers. Each food item here goes for only NT$10.

A: Lan Tian Guandong Tien-Bu-La opened eight years ago and, although it's located in an alley near XiangShang Road, it still attracts many young patrons.

B: The handmade seafood-based products here are sourced from QiJing in Kaohsiung.

C: The ingredients for Lan Tian's signature dish, Pork Stew Roll, include minced pork marinated in red fermented rice, fish paste, beans and fried red onions. This mouth-watering dish has a very unique texture. Specialty large pork balls are also a satisfying treat for those who love pork. The Egg Roll is wrapped in a tofu skin with fish paste in the next layer; a seaweed sheet separates the yummy egg-yolk and coated minced pork in the center. This guarantees a wonderful texture and flavor with each bite.

Lan Tian Guandong Tien-Bu-La Lan Tian Guandong Tien-Bu-La


Ji Jiang Japanese Guandong Tien-Bu-La

Ji Jiang Japanese Guandong Tien-Bu-La

239-2, ChongDe Rd, Sec 2
(04) 2241-3080
Hours: 5 pm-12 am
(closed Sundays)

Ms. Zheng Yu-wen, the owner of this shop, comes from Pingtung. Being the no-frills person that she is, she makes her own swordfish paste and oden items. The broth is tasty with seaweed and dried fish. Fresh fruit and vegetables, such as cauliflower, tomatoes, apples and corn, plus Red Fermented Rice Fried Eggs, are selections available to customers and are all prepared fresh before serving. The owner's friendly, genuine-feeling service is a big reason many Japanese tourists from a nearby hotel and student customers keep going back to Ji Jiang, which makes them feel at home.

A: Nothing beats enjoying a bowl of hot soup under the golden light on a cold winter day.

B: Burdock Tien-Bu-La (NT$30/piece) and Swordfish Plus Burdock Tien-Bu-La can be ordered either boiled or deep fried, and are delicious either way. Chicken on a Stick (NT$45/stick) is made with ground chicken, herb root paste and pig oil, resulting in a uniquely-flavorful taste. A favorite order among Japanese customers is Vegetable Stew (NT$100), prepared with lotus roots, potatoes, chicken legs, Konnyaku-also known as Devil's Tongue and referred to as a yam , mushrooms and burdock.

C: Handmade Swordfish Tien-Bu-La (NT$15), normal Tien-Bu-La (NT$10), Pumpkin Bean Cheese Balls (NT$30), Bitter Melon Balls (NT$35) and Japanese Turnip Boil (NT$20) are all handmade by the shop, and very tasty and healthy.

Ji Jiang Japanese Guandong Tien-Bu-La Ji Jiang Japanese Guandong Tien-Bu-La


Shun Kou Japanese Guandong Tien-Bu-La


Shun Kou Japanese Guandong Tien-Bu-La

32, ChangChun St
Hours: 4-11 pm
(closed Sundays)

This eatery offers three special broths--spicy, pig bone and miso. Customers visiting for the first time are often baffled by all the choices. But, after checking out all the menu items--fish-paste products, turnips, squid and codfish tofu, they are convinced they came to right place. This shop combines new elements with a traditional Japanese Tien-Bu-La broth, resulting in a very creative flavor that definitely should be sampled.

A: Shun Kou Japanese Guandong Tien-Bu-La, located directly behind Sogo Department Store, creatively combines Chinese-style hot pots, Taiwanese-style soy sauce stews and Japanese ramen.

B: All orders here are freshly prepared on the spot, with choices like baby corn (NT$20), water cabbage (NT$20), Three Pork Balls (NT$30), and Two Octopus Balls (NT$15). The broth is tasty, thanks to the Japanese white miso and other natural ingredient flavors.

C: Besides all the oden items, the shop also provides meat options, such as pork, boneless veal and chicken legs (NT$50 per serving). When dining here, customers should first decide on their broth and then select items to go into the broth. The pig-bone broth is clear but tasty while the spicy broth has a Chinese herbal fragrance. There are no broth refills offered and this shop closes when the broth runs out.

Shun Kou Japanese Guandong Tien-Bu-La Shun Kou Japanese Guandong Tien-Bu-La


Hao Quan Cheng Vegetable Guandong Tien-Bu-La

Hao Quan Cheng Vegetable Guandong Tien-Bu-La

335, DaSheng St (near DaYe Rd)
(04) 2310-0586
Hours: 4-9:30 pm
holidays 4-10:30 pm

Is it possible for Guandong tien-bu-la to be vegetarian? Hao Quan Cheng has accomplished this, as all of its oden items are vegetables or made of vegetables. Even the popular Tempura order is made of soybean fibers and whey protein. The broth is simmered for many hours with a wide variety of vegetables and fruit, including seaweed, mushrooms and turnips. Shop owner Guo Luo-an is herself a vegetarian and relates to those who love fresh greens from the garden. Not only are all of her ingredients carefully selected and thoroughly washed, but they also cost only NT$10 each.

A: This vegetarian Guandong tien-bu-la eatery might be small but it's clean and unique, boasting not only good food but also interesting decor like a green plant-embedded wall.

B: The owner is responsible for selecting, sampling and buying ingredients like purple Chinese yams, turnips, yams, mountain bitter melons, pumpkins and mountain taro roots. The shop also makes its own dumplings, with fillings consisting of a mixture of chopped-up tofu skins and cilantro. To successfully marry the dumplings to the broth, these are first deep-fried and then stewed. This releases a nice fragrance and makes them ready for serving.

C: Guanmiao in Tainan is famous for its sliced noodles. These translucent, lily-leaf-edged noodles are tasty and have a unique texture. Mushrooms, black tree ears (a fungus variety) and Chinese cabbage can be added to the noodles with NT$10 charged for each added item.

Hao Quan Cheng Vegetable Guandong Tien-Bu-La Hao Quan Cheng Vegetable Guandong Tien-Bu-La


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