China News Service, Taipei, Nov. 11 (Xinhua) -- Liuzhou snail powder is fragrant

China News Service reporter Chen Xiaoyuan

Less than five o'clock on Sunday afternoon, the Liuzhou snail noodle shop, which is only more than 100 meters away from Longshan Temple in Monga, Taipei, was already full of diners, and people lined up at the door, and there were takeaways from time to time.

"Now we can sell more than 1,000 bowls a day on average, and when we first opened more than 10 years ago, we only sold three or four bowls a day. Wei Qingwen, the owner of Liuzhou snail noodle shop, said in a recent interview with a reporter from China News Service in Taipei.

On November 11, the Liuzhou snail noodle shop in Wanhua District, Taipei, was full of customers. Photo by China News Service reporter Chen Xiaoyuan

Wei Qingwen married to Taiwan from Liuzhou, Guangxi Province in 1999, and opened a store to operate snail noodles in 2010 because she missed the taste of her hometown. "At that time, there was no snail noodle shop in Taiwan, and I wanted to bring the delicious food from my hometown, and some people should like it." She said.

The ingredients of snail noodles include peanuts, sour bamboo shoots, beans, fungus, etc., and the soup base needs to be boiled with snails and pork bones. "The real thing is the most important thing." In the early days of her business, the biggest problem Wei Qingwen encountered was to find strong rice noodles and raw materials such as snails. In order to cook the authentic taste of her hometown, she initially bought some ingredients from the mainland, and went to Taitung, Hualien and other places to purchase wild snails.

In order to adapt to the taste of the Taiwanese people, Wei Qingwen has continuously improved, reduced the spicy taste of the soup pot, reduced oil and salt, and successively launched snail noodles with different ingredients such as beef, pork, and duck feet.

Under the word of mouth of customers and media reports, half a year after the store opened, the snail noodle shop has improved. The couple's store in Wanhua District now employs 10 people and has a branch in Da'an District.

On November 11, in the Liuzhou snail noodle shop in Wanhua District, Taipei, the owner Wei Qingwen was making snail noodles. Photo by China News Service reporter Chen Xiaoyuan

People from Yunlin, Changhua and other places have made a special drive to taste it, mainland tourists will also visit when they come to Taiwan, and overseas tourists will come here.

Business is booming, and the store also provides a takeaway service. Therefore, when the new crown epidemic has had an impact on the catering industry in recent years, Wei Qingwen's store is still operating smoothly.

However, in January this year, the Taiwan authorities suddenly announced that rice noodles and other vermicelli products made on the mainland were not allowed to be imported. This news made Wei Qingwen, who has requirements for the quality of rice noodles, not sleep well for several days.

In order to make rice noodles as strong as her hometown, in May, Wei Qingwen spent about 5,15 yuan to import rice noodle making equipment from the mainland, and went to Liuzhou many times to learn technology.

Recently, she goes to the rice noodle shop at 8 a.m. every morning to study the production process, and at the snail noodle shop at 6 p.m. "It is estimated that we will be able to achieve self-sufficiency in rice noodles next month."

On the inner wall of Wanhua store, in addition to the introduction of snail noodles, there is also a map of Guangxi. Wei Qingwen said that customers often ask her about her hometown, and the map can help to understand.

On November 11, customers were dining at the Liuzhou snail noodle shop in Wanhua District, Taipei. Photo by China News Service reporter Chen Xiaoyuan

After coming to Taiwan for more than 20 years, Wei Qingwen often returns to her hometown to visit relatives, "every time I feel that it is changing with each passing day". In the past two or three years, many sisters from Liuzhou who married Taiwan have also opened snail noodle shops. She believes that this is a good thing, "so that more people can know about the food of their hometown".

Some friends and netizens suggested that she promote her hometown food through live webcasts. She has recently taken a course and "will try it in the future when I have the chance".

In her spare time, Wei Qingwen loves swimming, and has participated in many swimming activities across Sun Moon Lake in recent years, and has also obtained a lifeguard license, and is keen on public welfare. Longing for nature, she now owns a vegetable plot in Taipei. When I am busy, I will go to grow vegetables and feed chickens and ducks.

Since last year, Wei Qingwen has begun to think about the research and development of bagged snail noodles. "I hope to make more flavors, so that friends from all over the world can take the delicious food home." She said, "There will definitely be authentic Liuzhou flavors." ”

Wei Qingwen witnessed a period of cross-strait exchanges, and was also saddened by the obstruction of mainland people's travel to Taiwan in recent years. "I hope that cross-strait relations will improve, and that will be good for the people on both sides of the strait." She said. (ENDS)