Keeping Warm – Ah Kuan Hot Pot

*Cough Cough Cough* Sighhh I have been coughing like crazy for the past week ๐Ÿ˜ฆ I think it’s the weather in HK, it has been so temperamental and very humid, making it easier for germs to transmit. HK is often considered a subtropical area where it doesn’t get very cold…but this year there were a few days that got as low as 12 degrees and to most HK people that’s already ‘freezing’ ๐Ÿ˜›

On cold and rainy days, my favourite type of food would have to be hot pot ~ and whenever Win WIn and I go to Taipei, no matter what season we’re in, we always visit Ah Kuan Hot Pot ๏ผˆ้˜ฟๅฎ˜็ซ้‹ๅฐˆๅฎถ).

Just in case you’re not familiar with Chinese Hot Pot, it’s basically like a fondue, but instead of having cheese or chocolate, you have stock or soup in the pot and you cook your meat and vegetables in the soup ๐Ÿ™‚ Because the soup is boiling and bubbling in front of you, it keeps you extra warm when its cold ~

So what’s so special about Ah Kuan? Well first of all, you get your own individual hot pot ๐Ÿ˜€ no sharing, no germs, no stealing each others food, just pure self-indulgence ~ But if its your first time at Ah Kuan’s I highly recommend you taking a good look at their instructions ๐Ÿ™‚

Directions on how to order ~

So basically, you need to choose meal, choose the soup base, add any side dishes and decide if you want rice or noodles ~ you’re kinda forced to have a pot each, because they have $260TWD ($8.2AUD) minimum spend.

Totally in LOVE with the tomato soup base!

Win Win and I basically go to Ah Kuan because of their soup base and in particular the TOMATO soup base, in which you need to add $60TWD ($1.9AUD). But you don’t get it ~ this tomato base is addictive!ย It’s got such a strong fragrant tomato flavour, it’s not something out of a can, its proper tomato stock and honestly, Win Win and I could drink the whole soup without cooking anything in it and we’d be happy ๐Ÿ™‚

We both chose beef as the main component of our meal ~ and it also came with a large bowl of goodies with meat balls, crab stick, tofu and vegetables.

Premium Short Rib Chaffing Set $430TWD ($13.6AUD)

I have to admit, this isn’t top-notch wagyu beef or anything like that, but whenever we have hot pot, we always have to have beef ๐Ÿ™‚

Variety of goodies ~

This bowl of goodies comes with every meal you order ~ It’s got the usual tofu, meat balls, crab sticks and corn. But I really like the tiny piece of taro and the light green vegetable at the back looks and probably is related to cabbage, however, it’s a Taiwanese cabbage called ‘Gao Li Cai’ (้ซ˜้บ—่œ). As a matter of fact, it has a similar texture to cabbage but has a sweeter taste ๐Ÿ™‚ Don’t think I did a very good job at describing, but if you like cabbage, I’m sure you’ll like it ~ please try it if you happen to find it in Asian markets.

Additional Corn $40TWD($1.3AUD)

We also ordered an extra side of corn for only $40TWD ($1.3AUD) ๐Ÿ™‚ And somehow I think the corn is kinda sweeter in Taiwan, not sure if it’s the variety of corn or the way they grow it. Definitely very yummy when it’s soaked all that tomato soup ~

How could I forget to mention the sauces!

Make your own sauce ~

Once you’ve ordered your meal, the waitress will hand you a tray full of condiments and sauce to make your own perfect sauce ย to dip your beef and meat balls into ~ Win Win and I love garlic ๐Ÿ™‚ So we’re always using lots of freshly minced garlic, little bit of spring onions and I like my sauce spicy so always put red chillies too.

Daisy's sauce ~

Ta-Da! Daisy’s perfect sauce! Okay…maybe I did go overboard with the garlic hehe

Sha Cha Sauce ~

They also give you a little bowl of ‘Sha Cha Jiang’ ๏ผˆๆฒ™่Œถ้†ฌ๏ผ‰which is like a satay sauce but it’s more commonly found in Southern parts of China and obviously Taiwan ๐Ÿ™‚ You can find it most Asian markets and its great not only for dipping but also marinating food and in stir fries ~

Simply delicious ~

The combination of all these things, creates the perfect way to eat hot pot and warm up on chilly nights ~

Highly recommend you going to Ah Kuan Hot Pot, when you go to Taipei ~ it’s affordable with great food and most importantly the soup is fantastic!

Ah Kuan Hot Pot (้˜ฟๅฎ˜็ซ้‹ๅฐˆๅฎถ๏ผ‰
Shin Kong Mitsukoshi, A8
No. 12, Song Shou Road, 2FL




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38 thoughts on “Keeping Warm – Ah Kuan Hot Pot

  1. Norma Chang March 5, 2012 at 8:14 am Reply

    Hope you got rid of your cough. That hot pot sounds really, really yummy.

    • Daisy@Nevertoosweet March 5, 2012 at 6:58 pm Reply

      Hello Norma ๐Ÿ˜ฆ Unfortunately I’m still coughing even though the doctors already gave me 7 types of meds…really hope I get well soon~

  2. Winston March 5, 2012 at 11:59 am Reply

    Good ingredients, tasty soup at an affordable price. What more can you ask for in a hot pot? YUMMY! I really wanted to go to Taiwan this July… Till the point we were actually looking at tix, but later was advised not to because of the scorching Summer and earthquake season. Sob… And now I is sad =( Anyway, glad you had another great meal in the region. Also, kudos on being able to blog despite feeling sick. All the best with the recovery, take care!

    • Daisy@Nevertoosweet March 5, 2012 at 7:02 pm Reply

      I totally agree Wince ๐Ÿ™‚ it’s the perfect combination hehe Ohhh you shouldn’t put off going to Taiwan because of the weather ~ Because I’ve been to Taiwan many times and don’t really find the weather to be that bad really ๐Ÿ™‚ You’ll have an amazing time!!! Hope you get to Taiwan soon ~ and let me know because I might be able to help you plan and transportation.

      Thanks I’m still trying to get over this cough sigh… it’s taking SO long…

  3. Jeno March 5, 2012 at 3:51 pm Reply

    Daisy, I sure hope your cough is going away, they are the worst! I am feeling something coming on myself also, the weather at Houston has been hot and cold, so unpredictable, this means lots of vitamin c drops and Airborne supplements before bed…

    The hotpot looks and sounds wonderful! Houston actually has all kinds of hot pot restaurants here, though we mostly go to Little Sheep or Japanese Shabu Shabu. Recently we discovered Little Sheep’s seasoning packs, so hotpot has been enjoyed at home (what a way to save money!).

    Take care!

    • Daisy@Nevertoosweet March 5, 2012 at 7:08 pm Reply

      Hello Jeno ๐Ÿ™‚ Thanks for the lovely comment!
      Oh no! I hope you don’t get sick too! I swear it’s that time of the year sighhh not good >_<
      Wow I'm really surprised there are so many types of hot pots in Houston ~ We have 'Little Sheep' too in Melbourne!!! And i just the seasoning packs all the time ๐Ÿ™‚

  4. Kiran @ March 5, 2012 at 5:10 pm Reply

    Hot pots looks so yummy.

    Bad cough is like a bad dream — it takes some time to rid it. Hopefully yours recover soon!!

    BTW, thanks for visiting my blog!!!

    • Daisy@Nevertoosweet March 5, 2012 at 7:10 pm Reply

      You’re very welcome Kiran ๐Ÿ™‚ Thank you very much for coming back to my blog ~

      I totally agree a bad cough is just the worse….it simply wont stop ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

  5. Nami | Just One Cookbook March 5, 2012 at 5:30 pm Reply

    LOVE Chinese hot pot – we do Taiwanese hot pot besides Japanese nabe (hot pot). It’s easy for me to prepare and meals are always fulfilling and make us feel very warm and cozy…

    By the way, coughs can take forever. I’m coughing for more than 1 month now. It started as cold and throat ache (thanks to kids) and now only coughs stays… very annoying! Take good care!

    • Daisy@Nevertoosweet March 5, 2012 at 7:11 pm Reply

      I love all types of Hot Pots ~ Chinese, Japanese or Taiwanese hehe as long as I have a hot pot I’m happy ๐Ÿ™‚ And I agree it’s so easy to prepare for ~ that’s part of the reason why Mr Bao and I always have it in winter.

      Sighh i really hope my coughing will stop soon…it’s making it really hard for me to sleep at night ;( Thanks Nami!

  6. Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella March 5, 2012 at 7:45 pm Reply

    Hot pots are so wonderful when you are cold and need warmth! When I lived in Japan and it snowed I used to have them all the time. I hope you feel better soon Daisy!

    • Daisy@Nevertoosweet March 5, 2012 at 7:49 pm Reply

      That’s so cool to have lived in Japan! I really like places that snow ๐Ÿ™‚ too bad it never really snows in Australia unless you go to the mountains hehe ~ I just hope this coughing will stop soon so i can get a goods nights sleep ๐Ÿ™‚

  7. Fatboo March 5, 2012 at 8:45 pm Reply

    Lordy, that’s is a heck of a lot of garlic in your sauce!! I’m curious wbout the tomato based broth, never tried that before. Think one of the most important part of a hot pot is the broth, as well as quality of incoming ingredients I suppose. ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Daisy@Nevertoosweet March 6, 2012 at 1:56 am Reply

      I totally agree ๐Ÿ™‚ The broth is probably the most important component of a hot pot ~ because if the soup isn’t good, the foods not gonna be very nice either.

  8. Jennifer (Delicieux) March 5, 2012 at 10:32 pm Reply

    Hot pots are so lovely and comforting. I love soups when its wet and raining outside, and when I’m sick too. I hope you feel better soon Daisy ๐Ÿ˜€

    • Daisy@Nevertoosweet March 6, 2012 at 1:57 am Reply

      Thanks Jennifer ๐Ÿ™‚ The coughing simply wont stop ~ sighhh but I’m sure having a hot pot will cheer me up hehe i’m craving some really nice minestrone soup hehe ~

  9. ohfishie March 5, 2012 at 11:22 pm Reply

    the hotpot is especially good during cold days ๐Ÿ™‚ the shape of the pot looks interesting, and i dont think there is any in msia

    Latest: Penang Food Festival

    • Daisy@Nevertoosweet March 6, 2012 at 1:59 am Reply

      Hello thanks for coming by my blog ๐Ÿ˜‰ What kinda shapes are hots pots in Malaysia? I’m so interested! I’ve never been to Malaysia before hehe

  10. Angie@Angie's Recipes March 6, 2012 at 1:56 am Reply

    I haven’t had hot pot in ages…my favourite one is Satay broth ๐Ÿ˜‰

    • Daisy@Nevertoosweet March 6, 2012 at 2:00 am Reply

      Ohh i like that too ๐Ÿ™‚ Satay anything is good hehe have you had the Sichuan ‘Ma La’ hot pot? It’s really spicy but i really like it too ~

  11. Faith March 6, 2012 at 3:34 am Reply

    I’ve never had a hot pot, but I really want to now! I love fondue (the whole experience just as much as eating it) and I know I’d love this too — it looks delicious!

    Hope you’re feeling better soon, Daisy! Stay warm. ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Daisy@Nevertoosweet March 6, 2012 at 4:56 am Reply

      Thanks Faith ๐Ÿ™‚ I’m still coughing sighh I really just want it to stop so I can sleep!

      You’ve gotta try hot pot soon ~ I’m sure you’ll like it if you like fondues ๐Ÿ™‚ it’s sooooooo yummy!

  12. Georgia | The Comfort of Cooking March 6, 2012 at 5:07 am Reply

    What a delicious looking hot pot. They truly do cure all ails. I hope you feel better soon, Daisy!

    • Daisy@Nevertoosweet March 6, 2012 at 5:48 am Reply

      Thanks for coming by my blog Georgia ๐Ÿ™‚ Are you a fan of Hot Pots too? ~ I’m feeling slightly better but still waiting for the coughing to stop ๐Ÿ˜€

  13. Erin @ Dinners, Dishes, and Desserts March 6, 2012 at 7:31 am Reply

    I had never heard of a Chinese Hot Pot before. Everything looks delicious!

  14. Yi @ Yi Resevation March 6, 2012 at 1:09 pm Reply

    stumbled upon your blog when I was browsing Jeno’s weeknite meals. Call me a hot pot monster but I can probably eat any kind of hot pot at any time at any place…just give me a pot of broth and some of that dipping sauces lol. Thanks for sharing your wonderful hot pot meal and I’ll be sure to check out the restaurant when I finally make my way to TW one day!

    • Daisy@Nevertoosweet March 6, 2012 at 8:35 pm Reply

      Hello Yi ๐Ÿ™‚ thanks for coming by my blog! I just went and visited yours ~ and going to pass it onto my boyfriend he loves making all types of Chinese food ~ I saw you shared a Sichuan hot pot recipe recently ~ I’m so interested in trying too ๐Ÿ˜€

      I hope you go to Taiwan soon, it’s truly an amazing place ~

  15. Rice Bowl Tales March 6, 2012 at 2:41 pm Reply

    I’ve never had an individual hot pot before, it sounds so great! But on the other hand, you don’t get to have a wider range of variety of food, compares to if you’re sharing a big hot pot with people … oh well, a hot pot is a hot pot, still fun to have in whatever ways :p
    Hope your cough gets better, have your tried ไบฌ้ƒฝๅฟตๆ…ˆๅบต yet, I’ve just recovered from a nasty cough thanks to them, believe me, go and try now, it really work!!

    • Daisy@Nevertoosweet March 6, 2012 at 8:36 pm Reply

      That’s true Jane ๐Ÿ™‚ it’s nice to have a larger pot too ~ because you get to put everything in at once and having all our chopsticks in at once is kind of part of the fun too ~

      I definitely believe you Jane but i drank more than half a bottle of ไบฌ้ƒฝๅฟตๆ…ˆๅบต, but still didn’t work that’s why i went to the doctors ๐Ÿ™‚ sighh still coughing hope it stops soon ~

  16. libishski March 6, 2012 at 7:23 pm Reply

    A while back, a new restaurant that offered individual hot pots opened up in Melbourne. I was excited as I had never heard of such a concept, but the food AND the service at this place ended up sucking so bad that we were glad to learn that the place finally shut down.

    Tomato hot pot soup sounds interesting – not something that I would have thought to order, to be honest but would give it a go if I ever get the chance to now ๐Ÿ˜€

    • Daisy@Nevertoosweet March 6, 2012 at 8:58 pm Reply

      Hello Lib ๐Ÿ™‚ Thanks for coming by my blog ~ I’ve already liked reading your posts! You are so honest about your reviews ~

      I’m glad that hot pot placed closed down too! I know there’s a hot pot place where you get an individual pot in Box Hill but it’s not that great…and quite expensive too! Sighhh most hot pot places don’t have good service ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

      It wasn’t my first preference either ~ but i was convinced by my sister and it was so so so nice ๐Ÿ™‚ Have you had the Hokkaido milk broth before? I heard that’s good too ~

      • libishski March 7, 2012 at 4:45 pm Reply

        Haha I think honesty is the best policy. Sure, it pisses some people off (mostly restaurateurs who are dismayed to read that I didn’t like their restaurant!) but I owe my readers an objective review. Always.

        Oh, whereabouts is this individual hot pot place in Box Hill? I’m actually not far from BH (only about 10 mins drive!) so I might suss it out, even if it’s just for the lulz haha.

        Nah, haven’t had the Hokkaido milk broth… I’d give it a go though!

        • Daisy@Nevertoosweet March 7, 2012 at 8:00 pm Reply

          I totally agree with you ๐Ÿ™‚ Being honest is very important ~ I know I’ve written reviews that are so brutally honest that my sister was worried that I was going to get hate mail from the restaurant hehe

          I’m only 15 minutes from BH too ~ We should meet up some time ๐Ÿ™‚ I don’t remember the name of the place on top of my head but it’s right next to ‘First Taste’ the soup place on Whitehorse rd. I’ll get the name and address and send it to you ~

          Definitely give the Hokkaido milk a go ~ I’m trying to replicate it at home but I haven’t succeeded it yet ๐Ÿ˜›

          • libishski March 8, 2012 at 10:10 pm Reply

            Haha you just learn to ignore hate mail, I guess!

            Yeah, we should defs catch up over some hot pot (or whatever takes your fancy) at box Hill ๐Ÿ˜€ Hmm, is the place called Little Lamb? That’s the only hot pot place I can think of that’s on Whitehorse. Of course, it’s been a while since I’ve been there so for all I know, there may be 1-2 new places that I’ve never heard of before!

            • Daisy@Nevertoosweet March 9, 2012 at 7:32 am Reply

              Yay ๐Ÿ™‚ I’ll be back in a couple of weeks will organise a meet up with you then ~ I like most types of food but after being in HK for a couple of months I’m dying for some good old BRUNCH food and COFFEE ๐Ÿ˜€

              It’s not called Little Lamb hehe it s something lamb can you read chinese I know the Chinese name but not the English name hehe ๅฐ็พŠ็ณ• or something like that ๐Ÿ™‚

              • libishski March 9, 2012 at 9:30 am Reply

                Bwahaha, no idea what this hot pot place is called then.

                Cool, cool. Looking forward to it! ๐Ÿ™‚

                • Daisy@Nevertoosweet March 9, 2012 at 10:07 pm Reply

                  Once I get the name of the hot pot I’ll let you know ~ I’ve sent my boyfriend on the search to find the name LOL

                  Great ๐Ÿ™‚ Looking forward to meeting you too ~

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