The number 1 production of Bamboo Shoots is in Dapu Township. They're the main agriculture for the locals, but most of Bamboo Shoots are exported to Japan. Capers are not only good for health, but they also taste good, making dishes with "Steamed Fish, "Steamed Eggs", and "Stewed Pork Ball in Brown Sauce" are great choices. Capers of Dapu Township won the prize of the best flavour in the annual food assessment.
Zengwen Reservoir Fish
Zengwen Reservoir is a great place to taste local vegetables and the Reservoir Fish. The fishery resource is rich in Reservoir. There're about 30 kinds of fishes can be found in here, such as "President Fish", "Silver Carp", "Bamboo Shell Fish", "Grass Carp", "Wuchang Fish", "Landed Fish", and a recent increased released species, "Tiger Fish". Restaurants around Zengwen Reservoir use local supplies to make various fresh Reservoir Fish dishes for gourmets; reserving tables or ordering by dish are all welcome.
The most productive area of lotus seeds is in Baihe Area. Baihe Area's cultivation is about 2/3 of the whole cultivation areas in Taiwan, scattered in places like, Dazhu, Yufeng, Zhaoan, Liantan, and Guangan. The main production here is Nelumbo nucifera Gaertn. Lotus seeds, also named as lotus heart and lotus nut, are the seeds of Lotus, a Perennial herb of Nymphaeaceae. Pulps of lotus seeds are yellow-white, look thick and fat, taste soft, fresh, and sweet. There's a green plantlet in the core of lotus seed; it's called Philoxeroides heart which tastes bitter but it can act as medicine.
When the season of lotus seeds ends, Nanliao mandarine orange, another local product in Baihe, are in season. The reason why Nanliao mandarine orange is so unique is because they grow in the ubac of Dadong Mountain. After Mid-Autumn Festival, the weather is cool; the temperature difference is quite big between day and night. And that causes the Nanliao mandarine orange to "expand". This season is also a nice time to go outdoors; hiking in Guanziling, bathing in hot springs, tasting food grown in the mountains, and following the County Highway 175 to find landmarks of the mandarine oranges, and bringing home some sweet and sour mandarine oranges in green peel are great things to do in here.
There're many kinds of Dongshan Longans, but big and sweet longans with shiny and powdered cultivar Feng Ko is the most common and popular kind. July and August are the season of longans. Besides having longans fresh, one can also bake longans to make dried longans. Locals call that "dried dragon's eye". Peeled and dried for 2 or 3 days, we can have dried good-smelling longan fleshes, preserved longans. However having too many preserved longans may cause flatulence. So people treat longans as tonic food, putting them into "rice cakes", "eight delicacies rice" and "congee", which is said good for the brain, the spleen and can calm the nerves and help us to have a good night sleep.
Dongshan Organic Coffee is cultivated in tropical climate, the northeast of Tainan; the temperature difference between days and nights is right for cultivation. Kantou Mountain, lies between 500 to 800 meters above sea level, is perfect for cultivation. Since it's close to Zengwen Reservoir, Wushantou Reservoir, and Baihe Reservoir, the humidity helps, using organic cultivation, the sun exposure is reduced to half day. All that makes Dongshan Organic Coffee have a bit of Taiwan taste. The cultivation area is more than 120 hectare, the biggest cultivation area in Taiwan. The florescence of coffee is from late March to early April; the flowers wither and die after three days. The result of self-pollination is around June to August and the harvest time is from October to the beginning of January in the following year. The main cultivation area, Dongshan Township is located at the south of 23.5 degrees north latitude.
In Taiwan the annual production of raw milk is about 320,000 tons, of which 50,000 tons are produced in Liouying. Lioying's dairy farmers are mainly in Baweng Village and Zhongxi Village; between them, Baweng Village is the one of great reputation.
Star Fruits and Meiling Plums
With the name "Home of Star Fruit", Nanxi Township's cultivation area is about 600 hectare. Mizhi Star Fruits, the most famous star fruits, are in Mizhi Vil.. With high temperature and humidity and well Drainage, Mizhi Vil. is very suitable for cultivation of star fruits. The sweetness of star fruits increases, when winter comes and the rain becomes less. With advanced pruning technology, the growth cycle of star fruits can be adjusted, and we can have star fruits all year round. Plums grown in Mizhi Scenic Area are the other local product of Nanxi Township. Plums can be made as meals, such as "Plum Chicken" and "Plum Sauce"; those are gourmets' favourites.
Guantian Dist. has the reputation of "Home of Red Water Chestnuts". The cultivation area is the biggest and is the number 1 production area in Taiwan. Water chestnuts are mostly gathered around July and the following months. The most productive season is in early Autumn, September and October. There're two kinds of water chestnuts, "Swallow Water Chestnuts" and "Deep Water Chestnuts". The shell colour of "Swallow Water Chestnuts" is deeper and they can be left on hands. The shell colour of "Deep Water Chestnuts" is lighter, and they taste sweet and good. Guantian Township also has the reputation of "Home of Water Chestnuts". And the Internationally renowned Water Chestnuts Festival has made Guantian Township quite well-known. Activities combined with the water chestnuts cuisine tasting, "the scented water chestnuts and the boat shadow" have become one of the best eight views in New Nanying.
Combined with fertile soil, and good climate, Zengwen River is also rich in water; Yujing Township can be said to be "Home of Mangos". The two main productions of Yujing Mangos are Aiwen Mangos and Original Mangos. Original Mangos are smaller, juicy, sweet, and rich in scents. While Aiwen Mangos are bigger, the flesh thick and fat. Both of them are customers' favourites.
High temperature and humidity are good for growing mangos. The florescence of mangos is from January to March. There're hundreds of bisexual flowers in each spike, but there're only 1 to 3 mangos which can be grown in the end. The maturity varies by species; generally speaking, the season of mangos is from May to October. Mango trees can be grown easily; they can be grown in the gardens or on the sidewalks as decorations. As we can see the spectacular scene of Orginally Mangos growing on the roads of Dounan, Jiayi , Xinying of the North-South Highway. Pingdong County is the earliest gathering area, then followed by Tainan and then Kaohsiung. As for the order of quality in these areas, the Originally Mangos comes first, with the best quality, then Aiwen Mangos, and then Jinhuang Mangos. The most productive areas of mangos are Yujing Township Tainan, Nansi Township, and Nanhua Township.
Danei Dist., the biggest production area of avocados, is always known as "Home of Sweetness". The cultivation area is up to 350 hectare, about 2/3 of the whole cultivation areas in Taiwan. There's no need to apply large amounts of pesticides in the avocado cultivating period, so there's less pollution. Compared with other fruits, avocados are high in nutritional value, and rich in protein, unsaturated fatty acids, vitamins and minerals. Thus avocados are named as "King of the Fruit" by nutritionists all over the world. Gathering at different period, avocados can be found from August to the end of year. The most productive season is in August and September.
Sweet potatoes, bamboo shoots, and pineapple are 3 treasures of Sinhua Dist.. Low price, good flavour, good for health, a variety of recipes, sweet potatoes are the main production of Sinhua. Sweet potatoes are also known as "Chinese French Fries". Now Sinhua is working on the cultivation of "Simon Number 1", a Japanese variety. Vitamin K can be found in White Sweet potatoes. The Farmers' Association of Sinhua Township develops many different ways of cooking sweet potatoes. Icy-cold baked sweet potatoes are the most special one. The date of Sinhua's Sweet Potatoes Festival is unfixed. But it is often held in summer vacations and goes hand in hand with other activities.
Shanshang Dist. uses different cultivating method to grow papayas. To protect papayas from aphids, Shanshang Dist. uses "Net Room" planting method; papayas grow like this, is called "Net Room Papayas" by the locals. When "Net Room Papayas" in season, Farmers' Association of Shanshang Township will present meals with papayas, such as "Papaya Rice", "Spareribs Stewed Papaya", "Papaya Salad" to attract gourmets.
Capers are the most representative local product in Zuozhen. They can be grown in poor land but the vitality can still be strong. And that is the spirit of Zuozhen Township people. There're not so many professional capers cultivation in the past, but after the promotion of the Farmers' Association of Zuozhen Township, capers have become the local product in Zuozhen. Capers can be a dish with meals and can also be a cure for rashes caused by having mangos.