December 22, 2011

The First Market. Hsinchu. Xinpu


Do you like to shop in a traditional farmer market? A traditional market reflects how local people live. Shopping in the farmer market is the best way to get acquainted with the local life. When traveling in Taiwan or other countries, “strolling through the traditional market” is on my priority list. There are many traditional markets in Taiwan; however, the First Market in Xinpu has always kept the most traditional way.


Following the small alley on the main street, a variety of the traditional tool shops stood in line and filled with bamboo hats, fishing nets, shrimp cages, bamboo baskets and all kinds of hoes. There were many others interesting items I couldn’t even tell their names because I had mainly lived in the city.

「絲瓜絡與葫蘆瓢」(Luffa scrubber and Gourd dipper)


In early years of Taiwan, local residents would air-dry Luffa. The reticular fibers could be used to scrub the pots and pans. They also air-dried the gourd and made it hollow in the center for a water dipper. It surprised me that they still exist today.


Xinpu is a very small and traditional town that offers a complete menu of Hakka food and snacks.

「水粄」(Hakka Rice Cake)


Hakka Rice Cake is my childhood snack with a sweet and salty flavor. The white rice cake can be served by adding ground pork, chopped dried white radish, and soy sauce on top. The brown rice cake is a sweet dessert, very soft and tasty.

「桔醬」(Kumquat sauce)


Kumquat sauce is a very typical dipping sauce for Hakka dishes. It is made with Kumquat. The sauce is a bit sweet and sour and used as dipping pork, chicken and duck dishes.

「煙腸」(Smoked sausage)


Hakka smoked sausage is a bit different than the regular sausage. The pork is marinated in sweet potato powder. When sliced and paired with the homemade sweet and spicy sauce, it can be served as a cold dish.


Be honest, the smoked sausages look a bit scary; however, they taste very good, a bit chewable with great flavor.

「賣豆花的小攤」 Tofu Pudding street vendor


Unlike the traditional market, The First Market has the freshest vegetables just picked and brought here directly from home by the farmers. Because they were home grown, selection and amount were very limited. They were safe to eat since there were no pesticide residues.


Roselle is blooming at this time of the year. Fresh Roselle is only available in this market. Roselle can be made into dried snack and paste. They can also be made as Roselle Tea. I bought a few from this elderly.


People here are so enthusiastic and hospitable. They knew I was from out of town; they started to chat with me and teach me how to cook. I was so impressed with this unique warm touch. Read More


Anonymous said...

I love those traditional/farmers' market, and it's so cool that you are sharing this because I find that those markets are not often mentionned in tourist guides or other english travel blogs (from foreigners). The cultural reflections (from a local person) that you bring in your articles is a reason I enjoy following it, it makes things a little less 神秘 :) -kd

Chiang Mai Markets said...

This is so beautiful! I love markets because you can always find some unusual goods that you've never seen before and don't even know how to use. It's so nice when people are helpful and try to explain to you how to use a particular fruit, or what to do with a particularly-shaped bowl.

kristen and micki said...

Hi, Kd Thanks again for your message and your enjoyment in following us~ Lots of small and unique places in Taiwan indeed reflect the local life and culture, and so glad that you find them interesting! We will try our best to introduce them~ thanks again!

Hi, Chiang Mai Market- thanks! The highlight of my visits in Taiwan has always been the friendly people. They alway left me impressive memory~

阿山 said...


Kristen and Micki said...


Jean said...

My partner thinks he went to that market when he was in the city in Oct. 2011.

One day I'll get to Asia (I'm beginning to wonder!!)

Todd said...

I live about two blocks away from a really interesting traditional market here in Jhongsing Village. I don't take my camera around there though because I'm too well known in town.

kristen and micki said...

Hi, Jean If he was in the Xinpu area, then he must visit this market! Look forward to seeing your trip to Asia! :)

Hi, Todd, Since you are so well known in town, you should take your camera there so that they will pose for you~~ :):)

阿山 said...

Happy New Year 2012

kristen and micki said...

謝謝阿山的祝賀!也祝你2012 快樂,心享事成~~

Rafael Lam said...

Happy New Year! 新年快樂! ^.^

kristen and micki said...

Happy 2012 to you too! thanks, Rafael~

PWT Sports Racing News said...

nice post .. :)

PWT Health Tips said...

Beautiful pics Thanks for sharing

Jorge Miyashiro said...

Ahhh! That post gave me hungry!!!!

Micki and Kristen said...

Hi, Jorge Thanks, nice to see you here again! How are you and hope all goes well with you! See you soon again~

Travel to China said...

All foods look really delicious... I think I would need at least 2-3 days on this market to see everything, buy up everything and try all the food :)

Unknown said...

We will be in Hsinchu this October and would love to combine a visit to the Persimmon Orchard you blogged about with a visit to the local farmer's market. When is the farmer's market open and how far away are the two? Thanks for sharing such wonderful information on your blog!

Unknown said...

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