Sun Moon Lake did very little for me during a short visit last year. Its campground should probably be relocated, a cable car ride to the mountain above the lake wasn’t an option due to crappy weather, I’m not really enticed by butterfly gardens and frilly mountain-top theme parks are, well, creepy. Swimming is not permitted (aside from the annual 10,000 People Sun Moon Lake Traverse) so many visitors opt to take a boat tour or hit up the lakeside hiking/biking trails.
Because of almost constant rain, we were more or less relegated to either visiting the several temples peppered around the lake (yawn) or browsing around the shops and food stalls in Itashao (伊达邵) and Shueishe (水社) villages. We chose the latter, which amounted to buying a slightly perverted phallic-themed keychain and discovering this awesomeness:
Take a grilled chicken wing, get rid of the bones, jam pack it with seasoned sticky rice, garnish with scallions and red onions and sell it for $NT 60 (not even two bucks).
Yes, please. And thank you.
I’ve since run into these rice stuffed wings (饭饭鸡翅) at night markets around Taiwan, but none have held up to the standard found in Itashao village. Probably because the stall in Itashao uses proper sticky rice (a favorite among Taiwan’s aboriginals) whereas other places use white rice.
There wasn’t much of a line when when we visited, but a row of photos in front of the stall suggests that whoever is involved with this version of the dish is a big deal.
Find the stall on the main road heading towards the pier in Itashao village, among the other food stalls and knick-knack shops.