Discover Taitung> In Depth Travel >The One and Only Sea Salt Making Stop — Mornos Cuisine

The One and Only Sea Salt Making Stop — Mornos Cuisine

The seven most important things in our daily lives are wood, rice, oil, salt, sauce, vinegar, and tea. Of these, salt is the most common seasoning we use. More importantly, it provides some of the essential minerals that our bodies need. Do you know how salt is made? On this tour, we’ll bring you to Changbin Township’s “Mornos Cuisine.” On this unique in-depth tour, Mr. Tsai Li-mu will teach you about the traditional Amis method of extracting salt from seawater.


Salt Making Workshop

Get to Mornos Tribe on time to be welcomed by the friendly grandpa, Leader Tsai. He’ll start the workshop by introducing the tradition of Amis salt making. Before refrigeration, salt was used to preserve food. Amis people are great at using sea salt to preserve pork, fish, vegetables, and other ingredients. Mr. Tsai often jokes that “Women must learn how to make salt before they can get married!” .

Making Salt is no Easy Task!

(Photo Credit:IG@mandylin_au)


According to Mr. Tsai, the first step is to see if the weather and tides are right. On a calm day, Tsai will head to the shore at five or six in the morning. He collects saltwater at low tide, and carries two 25-liter buckets of water back to a large traditional stove. For the next eight hours, he will boil the seawater over an open flame. He stirs the salt and makes sure that the temperature is maintained to ensure it comes out right. Salt making requires a lot of time and skill, but it is all worth it to Mr. Tsai. “These are the traditions and techniques passed down from my ancestors. If I don’t continue making it, then the skill will be lost.”

(Photo Credit:IG@mandylin_au)


Mornos Cuisine is the last place in Taiwan that makes salt with this traditional method. It is well worth the visit to experience salt making! The entire course will last for around two hours. Mr. Tsai will complete the most tiring portion for us so that we can enjoy the stirring part of making salt. Stirring salt isn’t as easy as stir-frying vegetables. A thick layer of salt is spread out over a large pan. Once the water begins to evaporate, the salt is scraped off and stirred. This is repeated for over half an hour and can be very tiring!

Next, the stir-fried salt is moved into a room to cool off. Once cooled, Mr. Tsai will teach us to package the salt in Asian taro leaves to bring home. It is an exhilarating experience to taste your own hand-made salt.

(Photo Credit:IG@mandylin_au)


A Salt Journey

Besides salt making, Mr. Tsai will show us different handcrafted salts that can be made by altering cooking times. You’ll get the chance to make snowflake salt and pyramid salt. Pyramid salt is a unique creation that was an accidental discovery made by Mr. Tsai. It boasts a beautiful shape and mellow flavor, which leaving a sweet aftertaste and has rich textures. Mr. Tsai has also developed prickly ash, mountain pepper, and rosemary flavored salts which can be paired with different dishes. Even five-star restaurants and the famous WuPaoChun Bakery are all customers of Mornos Cuisine! If you would like to taste pure and authentic sea salt dishes, please make a reservation with Mornos Cuisine to experience Amis traditional food culture. You can also preorder their unique sea salt coffee and sea salt breads.

(Photo Credit:IG@mandylin_au)

For us, the most impressive part of the tour was Mr. Tsai’s passion for Amis Culture. He built the “Mornos Cultural Museum” to display many Amis artifacts and tools. There, you will find bamboo bird catchers, water pitchers, bamboo millet rice containers, mochi hammers, precious historic photos, and newspaper clippings. These eye-opening exhibits will help you understand Amis culture.