17 October 2014

Taiwan Takeaways - what we brought back

On our recent trip to Taiwan we purloined a few little bits to bring back. Soaps, sweets and a strange christmas gift filled our bags on return.

There were a lot of things we would have liked to bring back from Taiwan but most of them would have involved a lengthy fight through customs. Nothing illegal, just the strict Australian quarantine conditions mean we can't bring back Taiwanese sausages, custard apples and some pickles. So we find sweets and small things we can use around the house to remind us of our trip.

Morinaga caramels are small boxes of neatly wrapped squares of soft sugar sweets. We found a number of flavours including taro, white milk, adzuki bean, rock salt and plain old milk caramel. They were inexpensive and made a long train trip far more pleasant.

Taro caramels were our favourite, they were easily bought at most Seven Eleven stores for about $12.

On Christmas Day we were sitting outside of a Seven Eleven store (they are everywhere across Taiwan), having a break, and a beaming lady came up to Shawn to wish him Merry Christmas. She vigourously shook him on the shoulder singing 'Jingle Bells' and then ran off. A few minutes later she ran back up with these tea bags in her hands, and a McDonalds BBQ sauce sachet. 'Merry Christmas, I love you!' she yelled as she ran off again.

Seven Eleven had a special new year promotion featuring Hello Kitty. Of course, it only started a few days before we left so we didn't get to stock up as would be required of any self respecting fan of the cat. I think the lady at the counter felt sorry for us and gently handed over this role of tape when Alison was going gagga over the display.

At the supermarket in Hualien Alison couldn't resist these 1960's throwback beauty soaps. We didn't see them in the larger cities, perhaps there's a gentler cleaning regime still in place out in the smaller towns. The evil spread of liquid soap had started but not yet gained a complete stranglehold.

At the Carrefour, it was a chance to buy some French soaps. On our trip to Noumea the Carrefour was a wonderful French slice of life and we stocked up on lavender Marseille soap then as well.

A selection of fruity, lavender and cream soaps. Boy we are clean in this household.

Daiso has spread it's tendrils across to Taiwan, which meant a few hunts for the elusive towashi. These extremely effective acrylic scrubbers were once available as cute bears and frogs, but can be found no more. Strawberries and plain old round ones will have to do for a while.

We love Taiwan!


Thanks for your comment joy - please keep your musings happy - if you want to complain about a restaurant please do it on a restaurant review site (or your own blog) - we're all about celebrating cultural diversity and the great eats that come along with it :-)

Our ethics: We pay for all our own meals and travel (though sometimes Mum shouts us).