Written by Eric Gong, Foster undergraduate
Yup, I gave it another try. After I tried ??? (stinky tofu) in Taiwan a few years ago, I swore that I would never try it again. It tasted just like how it smelled and I honestly despised the taste. It looks as if my resolve has weakened over time. My food philosophy has evolved over time. Local foods and fermented foods are both of greater interest to me. ??? fit into both of these categories, so when I was in ??, I decided to go for this local specialty*.
*Hard to see in the picture, but this type of ??? came in a soup. It is made differently than the Taiwanese kind. It smells about the same though.
One of my friends gave his assessment and I think it sums it up pretty well: “It just tastes like tofu”. I’d agree that it really just tasted like tofu, green onions, and chili peppers. It’s the after-taste that’s special; lingers in the mouth for quite a while, which was certainly not a plus for me. But ??? has now moved into a zone closing to acceptance. I’m still not fond of it, but this polarizing Chinese snack could probably warrant a few more tries from me.