Cheesy Chicken Fascination

Mesmerised by the vendor blowtorching a topping of shredded cheese.
Mesmerised by the vendor blowtorching a topping of shredded cheese.

I took this photo of a young girl fascinated by one of the vendors at work, from in amongst the throngs of revellers out savouring the sights and smells of Lehua Night Market 樂華夜市 in Yonghe 永和, New Taipei City 新北市.

I’d just purchased a new (well, second hand, but new to me) lens for low-light photography, and was eager to test it out on the riot of light and flesh that constitutes one of Taiwan’s most iconic cultural fixtures. I missed focus on more shots then I’d care to admit whilst getting used to it, but this one capturing the warm ambient glow from the food stands came out pretty well.

The Hangul on the stall hints to the origins of this dish: ‘Korean-style cheese fried chicken 韓式起司炸雞’ or ‘Cheese Buldak 치즈불닭’ in its native tongue. I didn’t sample any, but I did leave Lehua distinctly ‘unhungry’, after partaking in plenty of sushi if I recall correctly, along with a pancake shaped like a handgun – yes I am a sucker for novelty value.

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