5 Top Local Favourites at Ling Ya Night Market in Kaohsiung
June 15, 2018
I’m pretty sure those of you who are visiting Kaohsiung would’ve marked down either Ruifeng Night Market or Liuhe Night Market as a must-visit spot, but I honestly feel that you can skip both of those night markets and head straight to Ling Ya Night Market if you’re an absolute foodie.
The Ling Ya Night Market is frequently patronized by locals, and it’s easy to navigate as the stalls are arranged neatly in two rows along the street, and you will certainly not get lost in a maze. The only downside is the danger of crossing the road because it can get jammed with scooters and vehicles, especially during peak hours. Forget about shopping or playing arcade games as the Ling Ya Night Market solely features food stalls. To save you the headache of deciding what to eat, here are 5 tasty foods highly recommended by the locals in Kaohsiung.
#1 – Squid & Eel Noodles
If you’re heading to the night market from the Tuntex 85 Sky Tower, you will first come across a stall serving mouthwatering squid and eel noodles the moment you enter the night market. I seldom eat squids, and usually steer away from eels, but since I’m in Kaohsiung, how can I resist the temptation to try their local cuisine? The bowl of springy noodles is firm and eggy, and I really like how chewy the squids are. As for the eel, I’m glad the texture isn’t slimy. The stall vendor is also very generous with the gravy, so slurp away!
#2 – Taiwanese Salt & Pepper Chicken
I’ve a weakness for deep-fried foods, and the Taiwanese salt & pepper chicken is one of my favourite street snacks at night markets. The crispy chicken chunks are so addictive, it’s impossible to stop at one. I believe some of you might enjoy pairing this yummy snack with Taiwanese beer, just like how Koreans love their “chi-maek”.
#3 – Braised Pork Rice
There are two versions of braised pork rice served at this popular stall. If you order the usual “lu rou fan (滷肉飯)”, you will get a huge slab of fatty pork belly with salted vegetables served on rice, and drenched in the flavourful gravy. If you order “rou zao fan (肉燥飯)”, expect minced meat instead of the fatty pork belly. I prefer the latter and usually order that, but decided to try the former just to have something different during this trip.
#4 – Taiwanese XXL Fried Chicken Cutlet
Besides the salt & pepper chicken, another popular deep-fried Taiwanese street food is the XXL fried chicken cutlet. I love how crispy the chicken is on the outside, and tender on the inside. Doesn’t matter whether you choose to have this in between meals, or as a main (just bring it home and cook rice).
#5 – White Sugar Cake (白糖粿)
If it wasn’t for a local, I wouldn’t have tried the white sugar cake or known about its existence. It’s a little crispy on the outside, with its interior tasting a little like mochi. I tried both the peanut coated and black sesame coated white sugar cakes, and I love both. This is a wonderful dessert, and put a good end to my mini night market adventure.
Ling Ya Night Market is a great destination in Kaohsiung if you want to avoid big crowds and marked-up prices.