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The sun-dried salty taste of the ocean

2021/05/09
Take a trip to a fishing village located on the shores of Pingtung where you can stroll around the crescent-shaped bay, try a local specialty called tofu made using bittern, and try out SUP (standup paddleboard). It’s an all-in-one journey of discovery. You’ll embrace good moments, live like a local and experience the natural ecology and culture.
 
Houwan Community - SUP (stand-up paddleboarding)

Come visit the Howan Community in Checheng Township, Pingtung County, an ecological community that gives travelers the chance to experience the local culture and explore the natural ecosystem. The travel programs are designed to preserve the ancient wisdom and protect the natural environment. Also, the revenue from tour programs will be contributed to the development of the community.  

The unique lifted coral reef in Hengchun Peninsula has formed reef potholes along the shore in Howan. The crashing waves fill the potholes. Sun exposure, scorching heat and a strong downslope wind turn the ocean water into layers of white salt, which is collected by residents for producing sea salt. The seawater that doesn’t evaporate is rich in minerals and can be used as a coagulant, also known as “bittern,” in the production of tofu. In early times, salt was not easy to obtain, so the harvest of sea salt is part of the ancient wisdom of the residents of Hengchun Peninsula. 

Houwan Community - Handmade Nigari tofu

The experience of making tofu with bittern passes on the forgotten culture from half a century ago. Following the natural tofu-making recipe, keep stirring the soybean milk as it heats until it foams up. When you smell the strong aroma of soybean milk in the air, add bittern to it as a coagulant. Then, pour the tofu into a mold and place a weight over the top to press the water out and form the final texture. The firmly pressed hard bean curd has the salty taste of the ocean. It’s suggested to eat the handmade tofu with the locally produced bittern fermented tofu. Also, douhua (or tofu pudding) can be made with soybean milk and a proper amount of bittern. Cold douhua served with sugar water is a delicious and refreshing snack. The leftover soybean pulp can be made into crispy pancakes by adding flour and pan-frying at a low heat to make the best use of all ingredients. It takes about 1 to 2 hours, and a full table of soybean dishes will be ready to serve.  

Houwan Community - Handmade Nigari tofu
 
The bay in Howan, Pingtung forms a safe area of water where waves are calm, making it the best place for water sports and activities. Besides diving, unpowered water sports, SUP, and canoeing, visitors can explore Howan’s seashore scenery and intertidal zone. Also, there’s a chance to watch the rosy sunset from the seawater surface, a journey with a beautiful ending.

Houwan Community - Canoe fun

Howan Community Eco-Tour
Community Tel: 886-975-726-178
Inquiry Email: backbay.tw@gmail.com
Official Website: https://howan.uukt.com.tw/