[Taipei] Linjiang Street Night Market 臨江夜市 (or Tonghua Night Market 通化夜市) may not be the default Number 1 choice for tourists in Taipei, but it is certainly one of the locals’ favourite.

Some of the popular street food shops and stalls there are Liang Chi Lu Wei 梁記滷味, Lo Chi Hsiao Chao 駱記小炒, Tien Hsiang Stinky Tofu 天香臭豆腐 , Golden Fried Chicken 格登炸雞 (they spelt as “Golden Fired Chicken”), Lin Shanghai Sheng Jiang Bao 林記上海生煎包, and Yu Pin Yuan Iced and Hot Tangyuan 御品元冰火湯圓 .

This Bib Gourmand stall of Yu Pin at the Linjang Street Night Market offers a unique version of Tangyuan (literally “soup ball”).

Tangyuan is a traditional Chinese sweet snack or dessert made of small, sweet glutinous filled rice balls.

While it is an auspicious dish served during festivals like Chinese New Year, Spring Lantern Festival and Winter Solstice, you can have these delectable balls all year round.

You would notice almost every table ordering a “bing huo” 冰火 Tangyuan, literally meaning “ice fire”.

Aside from the presentation, what makes Yu Pin Yuan’s Tangyuan (NT$80, SGD3.70) unique is the interplay of hot and cold.

The glutinous balls, 6 of them, are filled with sesame or peanut, then served atop a bowl of shaved ice.

It is finished off with tang gui hua – a jelly-like syrup made from fresh Osmanthus flowers and white sugar.

It will be presented to your table with ‘smoke’ coming out from the dessert.

And I would recommend eating the dumplings while there are hot and skin supple, otherwise the outer layer may turn harder due to long contact with the ice.

Other than the thrilling hot-cold sensation, the fillings were delicious – molten also lava-like, and quite packed full.

Between the black sesame and peanut, I enjoyed the former better for its aromatic and earthy flavours.

Customers can also get more drizzle of the Osmanthus syrup and lemon sauce near the counter, to add more sweetness and tanginess.

Another popular is the 酒酿加蛋综合汤圆 (NT$100, SGD4.70), a bowl of rice dumplings soaked in fermented rice wine with egg.

This is commonly consumed during winter days, as the sweet rice wine savour would give a comforting feeling. Though it needs getting used to with the incorporation of eggs.

One of the most delicious and chewy glutinous rice dumplings I ever had, and would recommend this if you are at Tonghua Night Market. There is another outlet at Raohe.

Yu Pin Yuan Iced and Hot Tangyuan 御品元冰火湯圓
No. 31, Alley 50, Lane 39, Tonghua Street, Da’an District, Taipei City, Taiwan 106
臨江夜市, 106台北市大安區通化街39巷50弄31號
Tel: +886 955 861 816
Opening Hours: 6pm – 12am (Mon – Fri), 5:30pm – 12am (Sat – Sun)
Google Maps – Yu Pin Yuan Iced and Hot Tangyuan

Yu Pin Yuan Iced and Hot Tangyuan – Raohe Branch 御品元冰火汤圆-台北饶河店
No. 142, Raohe Street, Songshan District, Taipei City, Taiwan 105
Opening Hours: 5pm – 12am (Mon – Fri), 5pm – 12:30pm (Sat – Sun)

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