Noodles

Soy paste: Key to Taiwanese cuisine

What is soy paste?

Soy taste is one of the essential tastes of Taiwanese cuisine. It is salty and sweet, and the texture is thick. The consistency is similar to oyster sauce. This strong flavor strongly influences Taiwanese cooking, and it is one of most widely used ingredients.

When a Taiwanese person has no idea how to flavor a dish, the most common solution is to flavor the dish with soy paste. For example: When Taiwanese cook tofu and green vegetables, chicken, pork, seafood, very often they serve it with soy paste, garlic and some cilantro.

For stir fried dishes, soy paste is added during cooking, at the same time as adding soy sauce. For other dishes, soy paste is usually added after cooking is complete.

Soy paste is commonly used on stir-fried dishes, sauces, noodles, and street food.

In the morning market

I sometimes hear the mushroom sellers telling their customers: “It's simple – just stir-fry the mushrooms and flavor them with soy paste, garlic and chili.”

Scooter Diary: From Coal to Coffee in Jingtong, Pingxi

Photo by Joyce Tay September 3rd , 2012: Well, I am packed, and the scooter is ready – no more doubts. We left by 1pm, the sun was above us all the time when we were driving on Route 106. We left Taipei city and Shenkeng behind, and drove up into the mountains.
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