Taiwanese Cuisine Menu
Exhibited in Ligature 30
To explore and represent my cultural identity, I created a menu that reflected my experiences as an Asian American. Because I relate more to American culture and mainly connect to Taiwanese culture through food and language, I wanted to juxtapose some of the stereotypical elements of Chinese restaurant menus like many images of the dishes and trifold takeout menu layout with non-traditional elements like illustration and bold and modern colors.
To put a twist on how many Chinese take out menus include images of the dishes, I decided to illustrate my favorite foods I grew up eating. I used a sketchy style that would pair with the bold colors. The color scheme was developed by selecting the colors necessary to convey the dish, like the tan, brown, orange, and green, then bolder colors were brought in to compliment them. Facts about the cuisine is embedded throughout the menu, as well as some Chinese typography. Since this menu conveys my personal experience as an Asian American, I included some stories from my childhood associated with certain dishes.
Taiwanese Beef Noodle Soup
Niu rou mian, or beef noodle soup is Taiwan’s national dish. It takes a lot of time to braise the beef and prepare the soup, so my mom doesn’t make it very often. I associate this dish with being home with my family. In Taiwan, it can be sold by street vendors as well
Chou dou fu, or stinky tofu, is a dish that foreigners tend to shy away from due to its strong smell. I grew up eating an Americanized version of this dish which uses regular, non fermented fried tofu. I eat this dish when my family goes to Orlando and eats at a local Taiwanese restaurant.
Xiao long bao, or soup dumplings can be easily found in the US at dim sum restaurants. This is one of my favorites because I associate this dish with the one time I visited Taiwan when I was 7 and ate a whole basket by myself.
Braised Pork Rice