When I stayed in Star Hostel at Huayin Street, Taipei late last year, there is something that I kept witnessing whenever I went in/out of the hostel. There’s this very cute half-corner-shop just next door to Star Hostel that’s always buzzing with customers (majority locals). The shop is called Fuyuan Pepper Bun 福元胡椒餅 (Fúyuán hújiāo bǐng) and they sell… yes pepper bun, a street food that has become synonymous to Taiwan; though it’s good to note that its origin is Fuzhou region in China.
A day before leaving Taiwan (day 5), we finally gave it a try. One of the best decision!
Fuyuan Pepper Bun is operated by ~I’m guessing~ husband-wife team. I love ❤ their cute lil’ space. Small and yet functional.
First, you need to tell the lady how many pieces you want. She’ll jot it down and pass you a number tag. You can see the number tags at the middle of this photo.
Made fresh in small batches.
The rest of the dough is covered with damp cloth and plastic to prevent it from drying.
This is how the pepper buns are cooked; in a cylinder-shaped charcoal oven very much like a tandoori oven. See the charcoal burning at the center? It’s very hot. The man will use a large ladle to remove the cooked buns.
Most people will stand and wait for their ordered buns to be cooked. We did that too. Besides it’s interesting to watch. Sometimes if you’re lucky and they have leftovers from that particular batch, you get to buy the pepper buns right away.
I like the packaging. Very old school.
Behold… our handsome looking Fuyuan pepper bun! We only bought one to share because it was evening and our plan was to go to Ximending next. Each bun cost NT$45.
And because we were staying next to this shop, we just went up to the hostel’s kitchen and eat it there. A knife is useful when you’re sharing. Hehe
The smell was intoxicating once we sliced the bun open. A large slab of pork with spring onions (added separately) at the bottom.
The outer shell is crunchy while the pork inside is oh-so-very juicy and flavorful. The pepper flavor is visible in the right amount. Not too peppery and not less either. Not pictured here is the good amount of juicy goodness dripping from my hand and also as you bite into it. It was a delicious mess.
As the pepper bun was freshly baked, it was piping hot. Definitely best eaten when it’s warm but we couldn’t wait that long. So we burnt our tongues a little and everyone were still able to sing praises to this wonderful discovery. I did not regret buying only one piece (have to keep stomach space for Ximending). But I do regret for not coming to this shop earlier… so that I can eat it as many times as I want during my short stay in Taipei.
This is actually my first ever pepper bun in Taiwan and anywhere else. Without even comparing with other pepper buns, in my opinion this is the best as everything was perfect. Sometimes you just need to eat it once and know you’ve found the ultimate one. This is the case for me. Ahh glad I found a hidden gem in Huayin Street.
Go on and try Fuyuan pepper bun when you visit Taipei. Remember to let me know if you feel the same.
Fuyuan Pepper Bun 福元胡椒餅
42-19, Huayin Street,
Tel: (+886) 2 2550-0356
Opening time: Mon-Sat 12pm-7pm. Closed on Sunday
Nearest MRT: Taipei Main Station MRT