台灣美食加溫台菲情誼

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2013 / 5月

文‧編輯部



「雖然去過台灣好幾次,但我沒嚐過因電視美食節目介紹而聞名於世的臭豆腐。聽到主辦單位要辦台灣美食展,我特別問了主人,這道讓人又愛又恨的台灣小吃會不會成為菜色?」這是菲律賓《每日詢問者報》專欄作家瑞娜對台灣小吃臭豆腐「既期待又怕受傷害」的心情。

以美食文化做為國際交流的媒介,最能引起共鳴。

根據觀光局統計,去年來台的國際旅客創下700萬人的新高紀錄,其中美食正是台灣觀光的最大賣點。去年6月,美國CNNGo網站大幅報導不可錯過的「台灣40道美食」,其中以小吃居多,包括小籠包、炸雞排、芒果冰、三杯雞、鳳梨酥和麻辣火鍋等。

但台灣美食當然不只是小吃。3月中,駐菲律賓台北經濟文化辦事處邀請國內6位廚師與菲律賓萊松大學師生進行一場廚藝教學,現場更料理出一桌色香味俱全的宴席。

這份精心設計的菜單,更將台灣特有農產品入菜,例如蓮霧鮮蝦沙拉。蓮霧是熱帶國家馬來西亞、菲律賓和台灣的盛產水果;台灣高雄、屏東的品種如黑珍珠、黑鑽石的水分多、清脆爽口,做成西式沙拉很有創意。

另一道阿里山茶酥明蝦,將明蝦浸入香氣逼人的烏龍茶湯後再油炸,入口即有茶香與鮮嫩蝦肉的兩種滋味。賓客們嚐到南瓜米粉時,不少人驚訝於南瓜濃郁的味道竟與米粉如此契合。主菜之一的客家筍絲燒蹄膀,將肥厚的蹄膀燒的軟嫩,用筷子夾起即可看到肥肉抖動,彷彿「跳舞」般流動,是一道展現廚藝的功夫菜。

誠如該處代表王樂生為台菲美食文化交流所做的註解,他引用愛爾蘭劇作家蕭伯納的名言:「沒有一種愛比對美食的愛好更真誠。」這場賓主盡歡的美食外交正是見證。

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EN

Taiwan’s Food Culture Warms Relations with the Philippines

the editors /tr. by Chris Nelson


“Despite several trips to Taiwan in the past few months, I haven’t tried ‘stinky tofu.’” These words reveal the ambivalence with which Philippine Daily Inquirer columnist Rina Jimenez-David approaches one of the more pungent representatives of Taiwan’s culinary heritage.

Gourmet culture evokes a particular resonance as a medium of international exchange.

According to the ROC Tourism Bureau, a record 7 million international tourists visited Taiwan in 2012, and food was a prime motivator. Last June, the American website CNNGo reported on “40 Taiwanese foods we can’t live without.” Street food featured heavily, including xiao­long­bao, fried chicken cutlets, mango shaved ice, three-cup chicken, and hotpot.

But Taiwanese food isn’t limited to street eats. In mid-March, the Taipei Economic and Cultural Office in the Philippines (TECO) invited six Taiwanese chefs to give a seminar on culinary arts for students and faculty at the Lyceum of the Philippines University, for whom they prepared a feast of delights for the eyes, nose and palate.

The elaborately designed menu highlighted dishes made with Taiwanese produce, such as Formosa Bell Apple and Shrimp Salad. The featured fruit, also known as the wax apple, is grown copiously in tropical countries such as Malaysia, the Philippines and Taiwan. Cultivars from Kao­hsiung and Ping­tung such as Black Pearl and Black Diamond, with their high water content and crisp mouthfeel, were fashioned into a creative Western-style salad.

On tasting the Stir-fried Pumpkin Rice Noodles, many of the guests were surprised at the pumpkin’s rich flavor profile and its harmony with the noodles. One of the main dishes, Hakka Style Ham Hock Braised Spring Bamboo with Essence Soy Bean Sauce, boasted plump ham hocks broiled until tender. When held with chopsticks one could see the fatty meat quiver as if dancing fluidly; it was a dish that demonstrated true culinary skill.

TECO representative Raymond Wang, when asked to comment on the Taiwan–Philippine gourmet food cultural exchange, quoted Irish playwright George Bernard Shaw: “There is no love sincerer than the love of food.” This instance of food diplomacy, a delight for guests and hosts alike, bore witness to this fact.

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