Is the Taiwanese hot pot healthy?
Hot Pot Taiwan: Everything about the Chinese hot pot including a recipe
Taiwan is known for its good cuisine and the many small Chinese delicacies on the night markets.
But Taiwan has a lot more to offer in culinary terms.
Because whoever comes here shouldn't just visit a night market.
A visit to one Hot pot Restaurants are a must!
Here you can find out everything about the hot broth in the pot and why it is anything but a classic German fondue.
Table of Contents
What is hot pot?
While Germans often enjoy a fondue on Christmas or New Year's Eve and have different types of meat cooked in a hot broth, in Asian cuisine there is - as we find - a clearly tastier alternative.
The Taiwanese do it with the so-called "Hot pot" ("Fire pot").
Here is also a hot broth used, but not all broths are the same.
Under dozens of broths and Dipping sauces you can prepare your hot pot and add ingredients such as meat, fish, seafood, tofu, vegetables or noodles to it.
Taiwanese love hot pot because of its versatility all year round to eat.
In winter to warm up and fortify yourself with the hot broth and in summer to grill.
History of the hot pot
It has not been established exactly where the hot pot came from.
It is sometimes speculated that the hot pot was invented by the Mongols a good 1000 years ago, on the other hand, there was research into the origin of the pot over 2000 years ago.
The fact is that for centuries the pot was served in a donut-shaped copper pot with a fluted chimney in the middle.
So the chimney let the steam from the coals burning in an opening below escape.
Today the hot pot is in Metal pots served over electric hot plates or a gas burner.
In most restaurants, the pot is anchored in the table or the top of the pot is flush with the table so that the boiling hot broth is prevented from pouring over.
What is hot pot made of?
Hot Pot is composed of three main components:
The broth, the dipping sauces and the roasting ingredients or side dishes.
No hot pot without hot broth!
Sometimes the broths resemble delicious soups and are a specialty in and of themselves.
Unless you go to a hot pot restaurant that specializes in a certain type of broth, many have a variety of broths to choose from.
There are these types of broths, among others:
- Shabu (A simple standard broth made from bonito and kombu, but sometimes made from chicken or pork bones or dried cod.)
- Mala (A very hot broth flavored with chilli and Sichuan peppercorns.)
- Pig bones (A pork bone based broth with me.)
- Chinese herbal and medicine broth (A special mixture of Chinese herbs that is said to have a health-promoting effect and is particularly popular in the cold winter. Contains among other things goji berries.)
- Cabbage (A pickled cabbage with a sour and salty taste.)
- Vegetable broth
- Kombu (Made from a seaweed base.)
- milk (Attention! It is still made on the basis of bones with milk, butter, garlic, onions and sometimes vegetables.)
- Sukiyaki (A sweet soy sauce. Similar to a teriyaki sauce.)
- Miso (A miso paste that is dissolved in a clear broth.)
- White pepper
- Kimchi (A sour and very hot taste.)
In addition to the broth, the dipping sauce is also crucial and ensures the right seasoning of the food.
Most hot pot restaurants offer a wide range of different sauces.
From conventional soy sauce, black or white vinegar, sha cha sauce (made from shallots, garlic and dried shrimp and fish), sesame oil, chili oil as well as chopped garlic, coriander, spring onions, lemon juice and sesame seeds, there is really everything.
Tip: Try as many sauces as possible and combine them.
So you quickly know which flavors you like the most.
Ingredients for cooking and side dishes
The variety of broths and sauces is great.
The choice of ingredients and side dishes, which decide what is ultimately eaten at all, is probably even greater.
In short: there is something for everyone!
- Meat, fish & seafood
- Different types of tofu
- Vegetables, root vegetables & mushrooms
- Glass noodles, rice noodles, wheat noodles
- Various small (Taiwanese) dishes such as corn soup, pancakes, sushi, cakes, mochi etc.
Types of hot pot restaurants
Traditional hot pot restaurants
In the traditional hot pot restaurants there is a small selection of broths that you choose one for.
Often there is seasoned standard brothwhich is also refilled as soon as your pot is empty.
You order the ingredients you want from the waiters or you can pick them up yourself from a buffet.
Then the hot broth is heated to the boil in the pot and your ingredients are added.
If you are multiple people and there is only one pot, there will often be one Partition inside the pot appropriate so that everyone can enjoy their broth and food for themselves.
Vegan hot pot restaurants
Usually are based on very many of the Broth based on animal bone.
But in the last few years he has Trend towards vegetarianism and veganism in Taiwan too no hold.
More and more people are opting for a meatless life and are looking for vegan options to continue enjoying hot pot.
Even if the traditional hot pot restaurants are still clearly in the majority, they have gradually adapted to the change in recent years.
There are more and more vegetarian or vegan restaurants or the menu is being expanded to include meat-free dishes or dishes entirely without animal products.
Hot pot offers itself perfect for all-you-can-eat meals at!
Most restaurants are so crowded that they usually have a table only for two hours forgive.
In these two hours you can eat as much as you want.
Danger: Most of the time you come to a hot pot restaurant when you are very hungry, take way too much and all of it ends up in the pot. However, when it comes to eating hot pot, timing is important! You can find out more about this in our tips below in the article.
The best hot pot restaurants in Taiwan
Mala hot pot
The most famous and popular hot pot restaurant in town.
Address: 2fNo. 157 號, Xining Rd, Wanhua District, Taipei City (GoogleMaps)
Opening times: Daily from 11.30 a.m. to 3 a.m.
Special feature: all-you-can-eat buffet for two hours.
Tripodking 鼎 王 麻辣 锅
One of the most popular hot pot restaurants in Taichung with a great atmosphere.
Address: No. 12 號, Jingcheng Road, Xitun District, Taichung City (GoogleMaps)
Opening times: daily from 11.30 a.m. to 11.30 p.m.
Special feature: You can find the best hot and spicy pots here.
Yang Su Ting Loop Train Vegetarian Hot Pot
Tip: Are you a vegetarian, vegan or just want to try an animal-free version of the hot pot? In almost every Taiwanese city there is the possibility to eat vegetarian / vegan hot pot.
Address: No. 208, sec. 2, Chongde Rd., Beitun District, Taichung (GoogleMaps)
Opening times: Daily from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. and 5 p.m. to 9.30 p.m.
Special features: An all-can-you buffet that leaves nothing to be desired.
Bonus: Most of the ingredients do not have to be constantly fetched from the buffet, but can simply be taken from the food train that goes in a circle around the seats.
Tien Shui Yueh hotpot
One if not THE best hot pot restaurant in Taiwan.
Address: No. 105 號, Cengzi Road, Zuoying District, Kaohsiung City (GoogleMaps)
Opening times: daily from 11 a.m. to midnight
Special features: Large selection of meat and seafood. Good price-performance ratio despite high, Taiwanese prices.
Tip: In the afternoon it is much less busy and you don't have to wait for a table.
Many hot pot restaurants are open late into the night. The reason for this is that you can sit together for a long time and come back after work late in the evening.
Why is hot pot so incredibly popular in Taiwan?
The Taiwanese people love to go out for dinner in the evening.
While in Germany you pursue your hobbies after work, in Taiwan you meet most of the residents at one of the many night markets or in one of the countless restaurants at.
The difference to the night markets with their hundreds of food stalls is that it is cozy in the restaurant.
You go to a restaurant, meet friends, sit together and enjoy the comfort, convenience and of course the delicious food.
Taiwanese love healthy cuisine, quality food, and being with family and friends.
Hot Pot delivers all of this and super fast too!
We asked our Taiwanese friends outside our hot pot restaurant how often they eat hot pot.
They just laughed and said: "At least once a week!“
After visiting the restaurant, we can definitely understand that. 🙂
If we lived in Taiwan, you would see us regularly in hot pot restaurants!
Hot pot eating also means eating in community, which is why many Taiwanese eat hot pot with their family and friends on holidays.
Tips for hot pot eating in Taiwan
1. Eating chopsticks has to be learned
Although there is a spoon in Taiwanese cuisine, it is more intended for eating soups or desserts.
For everything chopsticks used.
If you are still unsure or have never tried it, it is best to practice before going to a restaurant.
These are the best chopsticks for practicing at home:
2. Do not let anything boil over!
This is the be-all and end-all of the hot pot timing.
It is very important to pay attention to when you add which ingredient to the hot pot.
Make sure big vegetables, like root vegetables or corn on the cob in particular at the start to be added.
Thinly sliced vegetables and tofu as well as strips of meat can bit by bit to be added.
At the beginning you have to develop the right strategy for yourself.
The following applies: It is better to slow down the cooking process before the plate is overflowing with overcooked food.
3. Use a ladle
Most hot pot restaurants also have a ladle on the table.
If you put meat in the hot pot, you will notice a grayish sheen on your broth after a short time.
That is a Fat film of the meat and not everyone tastes particularly good.
Simply remove the film with the trowel and put the leftovers in a bowl.
4. Check the heat and turn it down
Once the broth has boiled and the ingredients are in the pot, the Heat turned down become.
You can control that yourself!
Otherwise the broth will boil away in it.
Over time, the broth becomes firmer and of course less.
Just ask for supplies.
As a rule, the waiters keep dropping by and refilling the pot with broth.
This can be your originally chosen broth or a simple standard broth.
5. Have leftovers wrapped up
In many restaurants it is possible to have leftover food packed up.
Both the broth and the ingredients.
Exception: If it is an all-you-can-eat buffet, this usually does not apply.
Make hot pot yourself
Do you love hot pot or are you excited about it and want to test it yourself?
You don't have to travel to Taiwan to do this.
The whole thing works with European ingredients and with an Asian hot pot to take home.
With this hot pot for two you have the whole set and it looks a bit like a Taiwanese hot pot restaurant:
This is supposed to be one of the best pots.
However, there are several cheaper and more expensive variants!
Once you have a hot pot at home, it's time to start shopping for the ingredients.
Here we have created a list for you that includes pretty much everything you could eat at a hot pot.
- 1250 ml beef, chicken or vegetable stock
- 250 g butter
- 10 g pepper
- 15 g of sugar
- 15 g of salt
- 50 g ginger
- 30 ml rice wine
Tip: If you like it a bit spicy, you should definitely add 75 g of chilli.
Mix your own sauce for dipping!
There are tons of combinations to get a delicious Asian sauce.
Simply mix your favorite ingredients together and create your own hot pot sauce.
Here are a few possible ideas of what you could mix:
Other possible ingredients for cooking and as a side dish:
- Beef fillet
- Turkey breast fillet
- Fish fillet (salmon, halibut, etc.)
- Other seafood such as mussels, lobster, squid rings
- Corn on the cob
- China cabbage
- Water spinach
- Pak choi
- Sweet potatoes
- Lotus root
Make sure you have a tasty broth and sauce, enough vegetables, and meat, fish, and / or tofu.
This should ensure a delicious hot pot meal!
Have fun preparing and enjoy! 🙂
We definitely do! 😀
If you haven't tried a hot pot yet, go for it!
You will not regret it.
With a good preparation and the right ingredients, the dish can only taste good.
If you have the opportunity and in that stunning country of Taiwan are allowed to travel, should A hot pot visit should be at the top of your list of highlights.
Are you an absolute hot pot fan, would you like to prepare hot pot yourself or are you even planning to eat hot pot in Taiwan?
Let us know with a comment!
We look forward to any exchange. 🙂
You can find our other Taiwan articles here.
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