There are a handful of restaurants serving traditional Taiwanese breakfast in the San Gabriel Valley, but my favorite is the one operated by the Liu family in Monterey Park. Tucked behind a grocery store on the far end of a strip mall, Huge Tree Pastry is the place to get your you tiao on. Deep-fried to order, these twisted, golden crullers shatter at first bite and are just as good dipped in a bowl of steaming soy milk. Scallion pancakes, which come with or without an eggy coating, benefit from a drizzle of soy sauce. Chili oil is nowhere to be found here.
Best of all are the fan tuan, tubular carbohydrate bombs with a you tiao running through the center and pork floss, scrambled eggs, and pickled mustard greens adding savory, fluffy, and tangy notes. The hodgepodge of ingredients is wrapped in either black or white sticky rice (the black rice is a touch sweeter) and a sheet of plastic wrap before landing on the table. Dig in like a burrito, peeling away the Saran wrap as you go. Order a tall glass of roasted rice milk to wash everything down.
Huge Tree Pastry
423 North Atlantic Blvd. Ste. 106
Monterey Park, CA 91754