Taiwan Kitchen Takeover

You won’t believe how many times I got…

How was Thailand?”

When I actually went to Taiwan with The Food Pervert and The Actor’s Diet.

Even the bank teller thought I said Thailand when I came in to exchange the TAIWANESE CURRENCY I still had… He then proceeded to give me the exchange rate for Thailand… Realized his mistake… And looked at ME like I WAS THE IDIOT. GiGi-Angry I smiled and “giggled” at HIS mistake… But all I wanted to say was: 

And you’re as smelly as a dirty old dog-chewed sock… That is now lodged between two dumpsters sitting in the blazing hot sun… That haven’t been emptied in three weeks. 




Sure… They both start phonetically the same… And they might both be in the South East Asia region (although Taiwan is NOT considered South East Asia, if you want to get geographically technical)… AND they might both be known for their strange obsession with dried salted fish and rotten pig carcass Hanging-Pig-Carcass But NOPE. THEY’RE STILL TOTALLY DIFFERENT.

I am coming for you next Thailand.

That being said… The recipes I am sharing in this post, that Tara and I made… Inspired by our trip to TAIWAN… May share the same confusion between Taiwan and Thailand


This is because OUR recipes of Taiwan‘s staple dishes… Look the sameSmell the same and taste ALMOST EXACTLY the same as the dishes we were served during our six day excursion through the small country formerly known as Formosa.


But since they’re not 100% IDENTICAL… This still means you need to SUCK IT UP and get your tight derriere on that claustrophobia inducing SPACIOUS and COMFORTABLE (you may need 10 90-minute massages after these flights) 13 hour flight to Taiwan.


Really though… These three recreated recipes are meant to be used to EXCITE your tastebuds of what’s the come… When you navigate your way through this tiny yet culturally diverse country!


Take a bite or five out of this week’s VIDEO!

Grilled/Broiled Whole Squid


Get charring… 

  • Rub whole cleaned squid with olive oil.
  • If using a grill, simply throw on the hot grates and cook for about 10 – 12 minutes per side.
  • If using a broiler, broil for roughly 25 to 30 minutes.
  • After, or mid-way through cooking… Brush with soy sauce.
  • Eat as is or top salad greens with this delicious creature from the sea!

Bacon Green Beans


Get ready for lots of bacon grease… Mmmm! 

  • In a non-stick pan, cook the bacon.
  • When cooked, add green beans. Cook for roughly 5 to 10 minutes.
  • Add salt and pepper as you stir.
  • And that’s IT!

Oyster Omelette 


  • 2 Whole Eggs
  • 5 – 6 oysters (we used canned)
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • 2 tbs celery leaves
  • 2 tbs cup chives

Red Sauce:

Grab your SKILLET…

  • Whisk the eggs, adding salt and pepper.
  • Place oysters in the skillet and add the eggs. Let cook for roughly 3 minutes, or until sides start to curl.
  • As eggs cook, add celery leaves and chives.
  • Fold eggs over, plate and top with the red sauce and more celery leaves!



  • Do you like squid tentacles?
  • Say the word “tentacles” out loud… What is the next word that comes to mind? LOL!
  • Which of these three recipes would you want to try first? 
  • Did you think I went to Thailand?
  • When was the last time YOU were blamed for someone else’s idiocy? 
  • Who’s going to Taiwan for Christmas vacation? 

GiGi-Tara-MangoWaste Not, Want Not



  1. Your opening statement “How was Thailand?” reminds me of an old episode of Amazing Race. One of the contestants got the two countries mixed up too! It’s like, ummm…if you are traveling the world for a million dollar prize, you should study up on the geography of the world!

    That Bacon Green Beans dish looks to die for! :)

  2. Those bacon green beans look right up my alley.

  3. Lol tentacles is a funny word and yes it makes me think of TESTICLES. Hahahaha! I’m hardly blamed for anyone’s idiocy and can’t really think of an example because that shit don’t fly. Unless it’s minor and dumb, which I won’t care. Money though, I care about. Lol. I knew you were in Taiwan not Thailand 😛 Which now every time I think of Thailand I think of the Hangover movie. haha :) Have a great one lovely and No, I don’t want squid tentacles. I’ll pass. 😛 -Iva

    • EVERY time I think of Thailand, I think of the Hangover movie too and it really makes me NOT want to go… Ugh. Terrible publicity for that country thanks to that movie, LOL!!!

  4. WOW! I think I would have to live on green beans and bacon if I went there!

  5. Ehhh Thailand Taiwan—SAME DIFF. Kidding. But I want those bacon beans and that is notttt a joke.

  6. Thailand, Taiwan, same diff yeah? Kidding haha. And Tentacles = Testicles… Obviously :)

  7. I’ve eaten and made squid. If it’s cooked right I liked it. I bet yours was great!

    Anyone who has a significant other is always being blamed for someone else’s idiocy!

    No, I didn’t think you went to Thailand because people only go to Thailand for two reasons, sex or surgery, and I’m guessing you didn’t have either there, lol

  8. I love squid, but no-one else in the family will touch it… but putting bacon together with green beans is a great way to sell Shark Boy on his veggies.

  9. I give you kudos for getting on a plane that long first of all. What an amazing trip. The food would have me though, I would have a hard time eating squid or any other odd wiggly things. Beans, noodles, yes.
    You are awesome Gigi :)

    • Well first off – HAPPY BIRTHDAY Lynda! 😉 Which of these dishes do you want me to stick a candle in for your birthday? LOL!

      And yeah, you would definitely have a hard time eating in Taiwan… Everything was chewy… Or in your words: Wiggly, LOL!

  10. ha not the same place indeed! My hubs would be all over those bacon green beans and I like how you swirled them up too! You do have lots more fun cooking than I do! :)

  11. OMG looks like you had so much fun in Thailand!!! LOL :-)
    I am loving the bacon/green bean recipe since I can actually make that! Thank you Gigi – you are a genius.

    • BAH HA! OH YEAH… THAILAND was just amazing 😉

      I think you need to thank THAT country for the bacon/green bean recipe! LOL!

  12. gahh i think people are just so obsessed with Thailand these days b/c it’s such a hot spot to want to travel to, and they hear anything resembling that word and automatically process it as Thailand. one of my good friends lives in Taiwan and i wish i’d gone with you to visit! oh right, i recall you said you wish you knew and you’d have packed me in your suitcase! next time. :)

  13. I actually need to make squid! That sounds interesting!!

  14. I really hope you made that face at the bank teller too! <3

    The hospital I was at started randomly blocking your blog again, but I am now living in student housing elsewhere, so HELLO! <3 I can't eat pork or seafood other than fish, so I'm slightly devastated that I can't eat any of these, but they do look delicious!

    • Oh no, you can eat the green beans – that’s grass-fed beef bacon I used 😉 I HATE PORK and will not touch it… With the exception of the dish in Taiwan – ha!


  15. The best part of hosting #TryaBiteTuesday is reading all the blogs and yours is ALWAYS a hoot! Thanks for sharing – pinned & tweeted – hope to see you next week and look forward to your next adventure!

  16. Too funny on the countries!!!

    OK, I am not that food adventurous but I am OK with that! I am not even a bacon person but the preen beans look good! :)

    We need to meet up! xoxo

    • I am not a bacon person either – ahem, pork is grosssss in my mind – BUT… Beef bacon is another story!!

      What’s your avail in the upcoming weeks?! We should plan something :)

  17. You are the funniest ever! I love all of your pictures – you always like you’re having fun =)

  18. I love your Thailand vs. Taiwan map! haha! Squid tentacles is pushing my limits, but I might try them after a few glasses of wine. Great post!

  19. Taiwan?!?! I thought you went to Tasmania! Now I am very disappointed and am not going to make your oyster omelette.

    • TASMANIA??!? Holy hell, we have a problem – LOL JK! But I wouldn’t mind booking a flight on over to Tasmania right now! LOL!

  20. I knew you went to Taiwan! Thailand scares me a bit, to be honest. I’ve had Thai food three times in my life and all three times.. didn’t work out. I don’t know why but I’m scared to go there and I can’t eat Thai food and McDonald’s is my only other option. Ew!!
    Moving on, no I don’t like squid tentacles. However. I tried calamari once. (I know.. not the exact same) I was with a guy and he said if I tried calamari, he’d buy me an ice cream sundae. All I had to do was try it.
    So I did. I didn’t like it. He ate it. I ate ice cream. We were both happy.

    • I have actually NEVER had Thai food before! LOL! I forgot that Thailand = Thai Food and I am not even sure I like it, HA HA HA HA!

      What kind of ice cream did you get? This will determine if we can still be friends 😉

  21. Wow! a trip to Taiwan! so lucky.. But I have to say that as a vegetarian- Im not sure the food would work for me.
    I’m sticking to Greece where I eat Greek Feta Salads and delicious fresh figs picked right off the trees!
    Taiwan anyone??

    • ACTUALLY YES – the food would! There was a strict vegetarian that tagged along with us, and he was just as full as the rest of us!!

  22. You are too funny! And that food looks…interesting! But you make it all look good of course ;D

    • Girl, don’t knock it til you’ve tried it! Those testicles… Excuse me, tentacles look scary but they’re delicious! 😉

  23. What a funny mistake for what is definitely two different countries. I can’t get over those creatures! Ahh! I couldn’t bring myself to eat anything foreign. I’ll stick to the rice!

  24. Bacon green beans? Genius! Everything is better with bacon!
    You totally need to go to Thailand next – I actually posted about it today :)

  25. Squid tentacles!! Humm…. sure! I’ll try it. Lots of wine please! :)
    Your trip to Thailand sounds so amazing.
    Oh wait! I meant, Taiwan!!! :)

    • LOL! I will supply you the squid tentacles… You bring the wine! 😉 You’ll only get away with calling Taiwan, Thailand if you’re super drunk!

  26. Robin Rue (@massholemommy) says:

    Bacon green beans? YES PLEASE. I definitely want to make those.

  27. These bacon green beans look scrumptious, Gigi. I so want them! :)

  28. I can’t even look at the tentacles! I like that your green beans have more and bigger bacon.

  29. Well as always you both made me smile and feel hungry. Ahhh bacon when ever I hear bacon I think of Tara :) :) Those dishes look good but you would have to tie me up blind fold me than shovel the calamari in my mouth. I used to eat seafood than stopped ??? The eggs and beans do look really good !!. Glad to see you enjoyed your trip to Tunisia, glad you were out before that storm hit !!!!!
    A new show ,,, ” The most interesting Foodies in the world ” :)

    • Bacon DEFINITELY reminds me of Tara as well, lol!

      And blindfolding you to feed you squid could CERTAINLY be arranged! 😉

  30. I am so making the green beans and bacon! Such a simple dish, but you just wouldn’t have thought about it before would you?

    And I put my hand up here to admit I did utter a childish little snigger when I’m sure you said “testicles” meaning “tenticles” 😉 Hee hee hee!

    • Right? Sometimes SIMPLE is just SO SIMPLE that… It’s actually complicated! ha ha!

      And… No one is holding it against you that your mind turned into a 2 year old for a hot minute 😉

  31. Too funny on Thailand and Taiwan, d’oh! Think I’ll pass on the squid tentacles, but some great flavor inspiration in these recipes!

    • There are certainly some amazing flavors that are so simple in ALL of these recipes :) And I am glad you don’t want any tentacles – MORE for me! lol!

  32. Tentacles. Ewa! I just shivered at the thought. I can’t even look at calamari when it comes served with the tentacles. I need to stop typing that word.

  33. I would try the oyster omelette as first of course because I am all about the eggs. Love your culinary adventures. I am always about trying new things!

    • Yes! The omelet as a first course, with the green beans as a side and the squid as the main – best brunch ever! 😉

  34. BAHAHAHA! I am so guilty. At first I thought you were going to Thailand too. Guess that means you need to visit there asap lol! But your trip seriously looked so fun. I’m not sure about the squid though! 😉

    • LOL!!!!! I knew it! I knew it! But don’t worry Lora, I won’t hold it against you – LOL!

      And you’re so right, I NEED to get my booty on over to Thailand, ASAP!

  35. Bacon + green beans = yes. Great flavor combination. I want to say I’ve had the combination before but I don’t remember it being the freshest (probably from a can – yuck!) I’ll have to try these as a side dish sometime :)

  36. I’ve never grilled squid — need to try that. And don’t bacon and green beans make an awesome combo? Of course bacon and anything makes an awesome combo! Fun (and good!) stuff — thanks.

  37. Not going to lie, squid tentacles freak me out.
    I loved dried salted fish as a kid :)

  38. I’m with Jess…. if it still looks like what it’s supposed to look like when it’s alive I am out.
    The green bean dish looks like the perfect side to the chicken I am roasting for dinner tonight but just can’t do the squid. At least not yet…

    • HaHa! Well then THANK GOODNESS bacon doesn’t look like a pig or cow! 😉 Go nuts on the green beans! If you make them tonight, let me know what you think! They’re so easy.

  39. GAAAAAH did some say squid tentacles??? How about you cook it and I’ll come by and eat it??? I’ talking about squid tentacles and nothing else!!!
    I think I’d wanna try the bean and bacon first – I mean – bacon!!!!

  40. maria @closetohome says:

    wow you are brave to recreate some of these recipes. I have never been to either of those countries

  41. So, I think one might have to have adventurous tastebuds to indulge in Taiwan! Although, the Bacon Green Beans sound really good, I might have to pass on the grilled/broiled whole squid! lol

    • You definitely need to be a bit adventurous! Luckily, I am… Within my dietary restraints.

      I feel like you would have gotten along FAMOUSLY with the bacon green beans! 😉

  42. Too funny and silly, yep totally different countries. Wow I am impressed by your 3 remakes, they look almost identical. I have to say the one I want to try the most at home is the Oyster Omelette. But I love squid and octopus, I ADORE tentacles 😀

    • YES! the TENTACLES are the sheeeezy! I don’t know what it is about them! 😉 Come on over and we can have a tentacle party!

  43. Definitely NOT the same countries! All of these recipes look really good!

  44. I have always wanted to try to make different foods. We always make primarily American foods. I love Taiwan food.

  45. I like tentacles, but not the work tentacles. Vegas would flip out if i tried to get her to eat that though. She’d be down the the bacon beans.

    I wanna to go Thailand with you!!! (Not Taiwan. Since you didn’t take me already.)

    • I think you should BLINDFOLD Vegas… And feed her a bunch of random foods and she has to guess what they are… Including the tentacles – THIS COULD end up…. Pretty sexy. JUST SAYING! ha ha! 😉


  46. Too funny! I always love to try new foods in different countries, and these are definitely intriguing!

  47. I would love to try Squid just to see if it tastes like regular Seafood. It must be great to travel to exotic places to indulge in the cuisines

  48. Yo, I love how you love the squid. Most people I know would be so squeamish about it, but you just enjoy it. Love your adventurous food spirit. Woot! You make me want to try it!!! I remember my dad pan-frying whole little octupuses..haha…and thinking it was so weird, though how he cooked them made them rubbery, so ew…but I bet with the right technique, they would be good. Thanks for bringing some fun adventure to my day, and expanding my mind. : ) LOVE IT! #fitfamlove

    • I love ALL the weird foods! 😉 But seriously – people always look at me weird when I go for the squid, the salmon skin, the eel, ha ha! I don’t care, my mouth knows what it wants! 😉

      YOU MUST try it!!! Please do try! Even just a tiny one. The little whole octopus are the best too! I have a ton of those in my freezer! 😉 Come on over, I will make them DELICIOUS for you!

  49. Looks like you guys had so much fun on your Thailand trip!! hahahahahaha! Love me some squid tentacles. I eat whole baby squid so the big guys aren’t a problem. I want to try that recipe first but never bought a whole squid that large. I live near Boston so going to call around to see how to get one. I am super impressed with you and Tara’s recipes and the presentation of your dishes are beautiful. My Brother lived in Taiwan for a few months and just as I was planning to visit him, he moved back to the States. Bummer but maybe he’ll move to Thailand soon and I can visit him there cos that’s kind of the same place as Taiwan :)

    • Such a bummer about your brother – but it’s OKAY because I have posted enough pictures, it’s as if you went, LOL! That being said – THAILAND here we come! Prepare yourself for some MORE weird food 😉

      Let me know if you find the squid and try it! It’s so dang good!

  50. Ha, I’ve never been to Taiwan… but I have been to Thailand (and it was amazing)!

  51. So how was Thailand? I’ve always wanted to go there, heard it’s beautiful . . . but that the food is better in Taiwan.


    • LMFAO!!!!!! Well I mean, if that is in fact the case – I will just have to see for myself when I get my BUTT OVER TO THAILAND! 😉

  52. I’ve been to Thailand too but not Taiwan. I was on Phucket one year to the day before the tsunami hit…yikes!
    I don’t often eat squid and I’ve never prepared it but like so many other seafoods, I knew it was easier than you think. You’ve given me the motivation to cook it. Now I just have to find people willing to eat it, hahaha. The man will definitely pass on this, lol. He’s not very adventurous.

    Fun video, ladies!

    • Holy moly – I am BEYOND thrilled you got out of there the day before the Tsunami hit! CLEARLY someone was watching out for you?? What are their food staples over there???

  53. I LOVE that oyster omelette!! Definitely a must do.
    PS. I made a Spicy Thai Bean Salad with Bacon a little while ago that I think you’d love. http://simplyfreshdinners.com/2015/08/spicy-thai-bean-salad-with-bacon.html

  54. I don’t eat fish.. but those bacon green beans look goooood.

  55. I have never been to Taiwan or even Thailand but I do know the cuisine from both countries is superb. Looks like you had a fantastic time xx

  56. Love your photos! The oyster omelette is really a classic Taiwanese dish!

  57. Ahhh This is so fun!! …and oh my word Gigi! You never seize to crack me up with your questions!! LOL… “say the word tentacles..” you’re too silly :p

  58. What a great lesson in Taiwanese cooking and recipes to boot. Thank you for sharing at the Recipe Swap.

    • THANKS Kathy! :) People typically bring Italian, French, American and maybe try their hand at Indian and Japanese… But hopefully this is a nice reminder that Taiwanese cuisine is not to be missed 😉

  59. The Taiwanese cuisine seems so good! And really, Taiwan and Thailand? haha. Ah well, they both start with a T :p


  60. Sounds like an incredible trip! And yes, I love squid tentacles. And yes, I realize what that sounds like since you posed the question 😉 As they said in the 80’s movie classic ‘Better Off Dead’ – “he uses it as an excuse to put his testicles all over me”. “Ohhhh. Tentacles. N-T. Tentacles; big Difference”. 😛

  61. I have never had tentacles and I don’t think I have a desire to try them now. :) Those green beans look pretty tasty though!

  62. Hehe…tentacles…yum! 😉 No but seriously, I’d totally devour them…..and all your dishes. They honestly look better than the Taiwan versions!

    • GIRL – get your booty on over to my place, I think I am going to be cooking up another batch of Taiwan this week! 😀

  63. HA! You seriously had me LOLing through your post – you are one funny lady! And apparently a pretty damn good cook, too – everything looks awesome, especially those bacon green beans. NOM.

  64. I loved the squid there so much… can’t believe I never thought to make it here! Half the fun was eating it off of a stick though, or out of a bag, haha, a plate is so fancy 😉 I actually DID spend Christmas in Taiwan two years ago. They embraced it more than I expected, but not much. I REALLY want to go to Thailand. Like, really really. Let’s go!

    • DUDE I couldn’t agree more! THE STICK is the best… However, when I got my squid, they de-sticked it… LMFAO – is that even a word/phrase/action??

      AND UM – lets pool our resources and get our butts to Thailand? YES??

  65. That’s not so bad–my parents have lived in Malaysia for 11 years, and people still ask me, “So how are your folks doing over there in Indonesia?” Sometimes, Indonesia is replaced with the Philippines. I have no idea what’s going on…

  66. It looks like you two have a lot of fun cooking together :) Will need to check out your videos … I am visiting from the #HomeMattersParty #53 and hope that you will visit me too at http://www/portraits-by-nc.com/blogs

  67. So funny, yeah buddy they are two different countries! This dish looks delicious! Pinned!

  68. Those grilled squids, yummy! I had them at the Richmond, Vancouver nightmarket. Soo…good!


    • They had a night market here in LA with lots of grilled squid but I didn’t/couldn’t go!! :( But… I can obviously make it at home whenever I want 😉 SO YUMMY!

  69. You girls are highly entertaining, you can even tell so by just looking at the photos! Also, holy cow all of that food… I love Asian food so much. But I can’t really cook anything but basic things so I’m a tad afraid I might screw ’em up.

    • Aw thanks Naomi! :) I Am glad we can entertain you solely through photos! He He.
      And these really are the easiest recipes ever no need to be scared AT ALL!

  70. I want that oyster omelette for the breakfast!!

  71. I love that you remade some of your favorite foods from the trip :) I’ve only been to Taiwan while working on a cruise ship and I didn’t have the day off so I didn’t get to explore…but Thailand…now that’s a place I’ve been and loved!! :)

    • OMG I wanna know all about this CRUISE SHIP!!

      And I want to know all the ins & outs of Thailand! We have to meet up again, duh!

  72. oooh those beans look nice. I have never dared eat squid, always thought it would be a bit rubbery

  73. LOL! Hillarious… yeahhhh Taiwan & Thailand = NOT same same! EVER. 😉 Love all of these Taiwanese recipes!! Squid tentacles are my FAVORITE! Gimme gimme gimme gimme gimme gimme! Loves it! Cheers, my dear! 😉

  74. Lol people are crazy. Well not crazy but a little dim. Okay and sometimes crazy. Like you for an oyster omelette? You crazy woman you. Idk I mean I trust you but that’s a little out of bounds hahaha. And squid? Why are you so fancy? But you have sparked my interest to go to Taiwan…it probably is forgotten a lot in the Thaliand hullabuloo.

    • I realize now that it may sound like I’m calling you dim…whoops! I meant the bank teller. But you’re still crazy for that omelette.

      • BAH HA HA! I am not easily offended, so I definitely didn’t take it as if you were calling me DIM – 😉 But I hear you… and I also hear you about Taiwan… If you plan a trip, pack me in your suitcase. I’m ready to get out of the US again! ha ha.

  75. I went to Taiwan as a kid and still remember the amazing food. We ate at this restaurant that did an amazing grilled steak and had these yummy spicy peanuts as an appetizer … my sister and I would compete to see who could pick up the most with our chopsticks (I won) (not that I’m competitive). You are brave for enduring that 13-hour flight – much easier to do when you’re a kid and the airlines had more leg room! xo

    • HA! You must have REALLY enjoyed yourself – when you remember things from your young youth- it truly means you had a phenomenal time!! What else do you remember from your trip??

  76. Oh wow! Love all of these Taiwanese recipes! These beans look deeelicious.

  77. Wow, what a terrific trip to Taiwan. Thanks for sharing your food and fun with us at the Plant-Based Potluck Party Link Up. I’m pinning and sharing.

  78. How fun! It looks like you had an amazing trip and I love the bacon green bean recipe!
    I also said tentacles and I don’t think I’m going to tell you the word that came to mind…LOL!

    Thanks so much for linking up with us at Share The Wealth Sunday. You always have such fun and entertaining things to share!!!

  79. You are so creative! I would seriously love to eat at Gigi’s kitchen any day. Love how your versions are so much more mouthwatering than the originals too!


    • AW WHY THANK YOU Andrea!! Well, if you’re ever in my neck of the woods – LOS ANGELES – do not hesitate to reach out… My kitchen is open to all 😀

  80. It’s so funny what you said about “Taiwan..not Thailand” LOL! I’ve gotten that a lot too. I’m from Indonesia (not very popular country), and people often said “Cambodia ?” Taiwan is definitely one of the place I’d love to go again if I have a chance !! The food is just amazing !!

  81. Oooh I love this post! My parents are actually from Taiwan and I get the whole Thailand-Taiwan mixup comments all the time. Taiwanese food is so unique, isn’t it? They have something called stinky tofu that I was too cowardly to try – it’s essentially fermented, rotten tofu that’s been deep fried. Oyster omelets are so good!

    • Oh yes!! EVERYONE was talking about the STINKY TOFU but I don’t think ANYONE in my tour party ate it! LOL!!!! I cannot eat tofu, although, eating food OUT OF THE US… Is always easier on my stomach. I am convinced there is far more crap in our food supply than we know!

  82. What a fantasy for to cook. Amazing I love the recipe with the bacon green beans, actually all the recipes from Taiwan that you made are great.

  83. It seems Thailand also is a great country to visit 😛 . the food seems delicious especially the green beans one, cause i love vegetables. But i can’t seem to get used to squid…think someone else would have to prepare it for me so I can it. Sounds weird….I know!!!