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Stuff you won’t eat

I’ve been watching Bizarre Foods, wherein our portly host travels the world eating some odd foods. Honestly, that might come in on my top 5 cool jobs I’d like to have, right behind professional bourbon taster. Now, I’ll pretty much try anything twice. First time to see if it sucked and a second time to confirm that it sucked now that I know what to expect. This works for me because if I hadn’t tried that second oyster, second bite of kimchi or second bite of roe, I’d be missing out on some really good eats.

Anyway, an episode I caught recently was in Thailand and a local village slaughtered a cow. They immediately ate the warm fat and other muscle. I’ve had a few raw beef dishes that were quite good. I’d try that, though it being roughly body temperature at that point may make me a bit hesitant.

But then, the villagers offered the show host the partially ingested contents of the cow’s stomach. Sorry, not going there. Stomachs are odd places where all manner of stuff grows. And, unless cleaned thoroughly, I’m not touching it. The host of the show agreed and didn’t try it.

Update: Oh and I would not eat bugs whole. See, I have this thing and bugs really creep me right out if their legs touch me. If you want to see me jump around and scream like a girl, just wait until a bug lands on me. Much less putting them in my mouth.

23 Responses to “Stuff you won’t eat”

  1. Patrick Says:

    Add to that “Laap Luat” – or “Blood Salad”.

    For those who know Thai/Lao Laap salad (frequently called Spicy Papaya Salad in the USA), it is basically the same bathed in raw blood.

    I’ve spent a good amount of time over there and had my share of stuff that would make you squirm. Living in jungles with no power, running water or western food sources has a way of making lots of stuff look good. I’ve had bamboo rat, dog, monkey, iguana, snake, bugs of several ilk, and various entrails of the above. And it was common for me to just eat something and now even know what they hell it was.

    I had a mild GI issue the whole time, but not any more than most people get when they go to the other side of the world (they get sick when they come here, too).

    One thing that helped: rock-gut jungle juice. Rice liquor fermented in clay pots buried underground went a long way towards killing most everything in the stomach.

  2. mikee Says:

    I am a longtime fan of that show. The host, Andrew Zimmer, has refused very very few things anywhere, and been unable to eat only a couple of things, including stinky tofu and durian, IIRC.

    Parasites are horrid things, and salmonella is bad too, and I wish he would discuss food hazards a bit more while he is chowing down in native markets.

    He does emphasize that one of the best and quickest ways to enter a culture is by leading with your stomach, eating new foods with the locals. I agree, despite knowing that abalone sushi has the texture of old shoe leather.

  3. D2k Says:

    The one thing I would never eat is nervous tissue, not interested in getting any prions thank you very much.

    It’s not possible to kill that stuff with normal cooking.

  4. comatus Says:

    It takes a certain degree of blog-journalistic devotion to go public with GI issues one day, and follow up with not one but two “dare you to eat it” articles.

    I admire that. Won’t go all Categorical Imperative on it, but from a distance, it’s almost heroic. Good luck.

  5. DirtCrashr Says:

    Bugs. Meh. They carry disease(es) and I’ve already had worms, it’s no fun and the cure takes a lot out of you.

  6. SayUncle Says:

    Trust me, my doc and I have discussed my rather well-balanced diet and he doesn’t think that’s the issue.

  7. Weer'd Beard Says:

    Bugs aren’t bad. Overall I’ve never had a liver that wasn’t horrible, but I do have Foie gras on my checklist.

    I have not, nor will I eat another creature’s kidney. I know what that organ does and I will not eat it.

    Otherwise I’m totally game, and if you need a loud side-kick on your eating gross stuff gig, give me a call!

    Oh and I’m having a Durian this summer.

  8. DirtCrashr Says:

    Foi gras is delicious!

  9. North and the Gun Blog Black List Says:

    OMG Foie Gras!

    If there were no pigs, foie gras would be bacon.

  10. Weer'd Beard Says:

    OK I need to get my hands of some of this stuff!

  11. bob r Says:

    Don’t drive a motorcycle without a face shield — eventually you *will* make the mistake of having your mouth open at the “wrong” time.

    As far as *intentionally* eating a bug: no.

  12. comatus Says:

    Weer’d, you just have to master the basic kidney recipe:

    Boil the piss out of it.

  13. Bruce MacMahon Says:

    My biggest foodphobia is yogurt. Won’t go near it.

  14. Jerry Says:

    I can’t stand the ‘Fear the Surviving people who got Lost’ shows. I will, however, skip an episode of The Unit to see The Kimchi Chronicles. Oh, and the liver or gizzard dinner is always the best deal at a chicken joint. I will skip the chittlins, though. I saw a guy clean some once. In the bathtub. That ‘kinda killed it for me.

  15. tahDeetz Says:

    Do you know what the difference is between city chittlins & country chittlins?

    In the city, they wash ’em out, in the country, they sling ’em out.


  16. Sebastian Says:

    I’m OK with bugs crawling on me in general… but not bees. I’ll freak out about a bee.

  17. Critter Says:

    at my local Korean grocery/diner i’ve eaten a lot of things that i couldn’t identify but thought delicious.

  18. anon Says:

    I’ve had Grasshopper tacos – so heavily spiced it may as well have been pulled pork – but if you looked closely… well, best not to look too closely.

    Huitlacoche tastes like just another mushroom aside from the unfortunate texture.

    I’ve also had peacock. It was somewhere between farm turkey and wild turkey. Just another big delicious bird.

    Things I won’t eat:
    Don’t Google “Ortolan Bunting in Armagnac”
    Under no circumstances Google “Jugo de Rana”

  19. Stormy Dragon Says:

    What about cooked bugs? I once had dry roasted crickets dipped in choclate and they were awesome.

    And chicken gizzards are good, but chicken hearts are even better.

  20. Aaron Says:

    Bugs are not bad. Provided you pull the legs. Had some roasted grasshoppers a while back. Tasted like sunflower seeds. Only problem was the legs. They got stuck in my throat. Didn’t get rid of that sensation for hours.

  21. joated Says:

    A buddy of mine once went caribou huntin up near Baffin Island. After several days of chasing the beasts his Inuit guide finally got them close enough and my friend downed a big bull. His guide went running back to the boat for something–my bud thought it was a skinning knife–and came back with a spoon.

    Said spoon was promptly used to slurp up the contents of the stomach. All that lichen in the caribou diet apparently becomes a vitamin C rich soup after an hour or two in the gut of a caribou. My friend passed on the offer but did take a bite out of the liver which was shared by all.

  22. BobG Says:

    Nothing wrong with kidneys if fixed properly, and some insects are quite tasty.
    I’ll try damn near anything, but I draw the line at casu marzu.

  23. Joseph Says:

    I hate bugs as well. Esp. spiders.
    Didn’t help I found a tarantula the size of my hand in the garage of my new house. They aren’t really dangerous, but I damn near got the shotgun out for it.
    We have scorpions sometimes, too. I used to be afraid of them, but now they just piss me off.