Fri, Nov 05, 2004 - Page 15 News List

Restaurant: Hui Hui Yunnan Restaurant 惠惠雲南小吃

Address: 367, Xian Street, Sec 1, Beitou District, Taipei (台北市北投區西安街一段367號)
Telephone: (02) 2826 5296
Open: 11am to 9:30pm
Average meal: NT$100
Details: No English menu, credit cards not accepted

By Yu Sen-lun  /  STAFF REPORTER

Jelly seaweed salad tickles the tastebuds.

PHOTO: YU SEN-LUN, TAIPEI TIMES

If you want to finish a quick lunch but without compromising your tastebuds with a bland bowl of noodles, Hui Hui is your best choice. This small restaurant provides a variety of tasty eats, ranging from Southern China's Yunnan cuisine to food from Myanmar and Thailand.

Jiang Tsi-hui (姜姿卉) and her family are overseas Chinese living in Myanmar. They moved to Taiwan 15 years ago and opened this eatery three years ago. First it was a small stall by the market with just a few plastic chairs. Now it has expanded into two adjacent restaurants, one features stir-fry dishes from Myanmar and Thailand, the other concentrates on steamed or boiled dishes of Yunan cuisine.

Thai, Myanmar and Yunan cuisine all have a reputation for being sour, spicy and a bit sweet, depending on the proportion and use of the various herbs and spices. The Jiang family is good at playing with the different tastes and has created more than 100 dishes for the two restaurants.

They have also mixed the tastes into their home-made sweet-and-sour sauce. A bowl of Yunnan cold noodles (雲南涼麵) is a good example. Unlike Taiwanese or 7-11 cold noodles, which are heavy on sesame paste, the sauce here is very refreshing, highlighting the sweet-and-sour flavor, with just a little bit of meat sauce added. It is best suited with a bowl of Yunnan fish soup, which is sea bass stewed with lemon grass, ginger and Hui Hui's home-made sauce.

Yunnan Rice Noodles or Yunnan Rice are two brand-name dishes. Jiang blends the tastes of stewed tomatoes, onions and turmeric powder and then sautees them with meat sauce. Pour the sauce on the rice and it becomes Yunnan Rice. Add it to the soup noodles and it will become the Yunnan Rice Noodles. Each costs NT$50.

For spicier tastes one should try the hot coconut-flavored chicken rice (辣椰汁雞飯). This plate of dark stir-fried rice contains a rich Thai hot sauce and is mixed with coconut flavored chicken. According to Jiang this NT$80 dish is the most popular among foreign customers.

Cold dishes, including cold beef, cold chicken shredded salad, is priced from NT$50 to NT$150. They are a must-try at Hui Hui. Jelly seaweed salad (涼拌珊瑚草) is one of the current food promotions at the restaurant. Jelly seaweed is also known as the bird's nest of the sea, and it's rich in collagen and calcium, a necessity for anyone who cares for good skin. The salad tastes similar to Thai style papaya salad but the chewy texture of jelly seaweed has given the dish an extra flavor.

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