10 Most weird and bizarre foods from around the world
Do you think you are adventurous when it comes to the food that you are prepared to eat? We all enjoy experimenting and trying out different foods from around the world, but some things that are thought of as delicacies in one country, could turn the stomach off a diner in another. If you thought you were being adventurous eating snails in France, but you couldn’t quite bring yourself to try Haggis in Scotland, you need to take a look at these ten bizarre foods from around the world that really are very, very strange.
1. Live Octopus
Most people have tried sushi and eating raw fish is no longer a big deal, but how about eating live raw octopus that is squirming around on your plate? In South Korea, they slice up live baby octopus, lightly season it, and then they serve it while it’s still wriggling. Apparently, you have to be careful when you are eating the dish, which is called Sannakji, because the suckers of the octopus can get stuck to the roof of your mouth. Isn’t it one of the most bizarre foods?
2. Maggoty cheese
Most of us would send our cheese straight back, if it were served with maggots inside, but in Sardinia, customers would be upset if the waiter brought cheese that wasn’t alive with maggots. There is a Sardinian cheese called caso marzum, which is made from fermented sheep’s milk, and it is served, and eaten, with live maggots wriggling around inside.
3. Bulls testicles
The eating of Bull testicles is actually quite common in cattle ranching country and, if you fancy giving it go, you can eat Rocky Mountain Oysters, as they are called, in parts of Canada. The bull’s ‘bits’ are usually fired, or sautéed, and served with sauces and dips. They even have an annual testicle festival in Calgary.
4. Fried spider
Fried spider is another one of very bizarre foods popular in Cambodia; be careful what you are buying from street vendors there, because one of their specialities is a deep fried tarantula. The spiders are fried in garlic oil, so that the outsides are nice and crunchy, but the insides are still soft a gooey. They are said to be very nutritious. Fried insects, of all kinds, are a common snack in many Asian countries.
5. Birds nest soup
The Chinese birds nest soup is so highly valued that a bowl of the stuff in a restaurant in Hong Kong could set you back as much as a $100. What gives the soup its unique flavour, and its high nutritional content, is the bird’s saliva that is found in the nest. Birds nest soup has now become so popular that the nests are now being mass produced in China.
6. Duck embryo
Balut is a dish that can be found in Vietnam, Cambodia and the Philippines and is eaten as snack. It’s the fertilised eggs of ducks, or chickens, which have been left to develop long enough, so that there is a fully formed embryo inside. The eggs are then boiled and served up in their shells as a snack. Not surprisingly, the delicacy is said to taste something like a cross between eggs and chicken.
7. Smelly fruit
There is a fruit that is eaten in Southeast Asia that smells so bad that it has been banned in hotels and airports around the world. The fruit looks perfectly normal from the outside, but when it’s opened up, it emits a smell that has been likened to that of rotten flesh, sewers and dirty old socks.
8. Fried brains
Forget the burger…How about some fried calves’ brains served up in a burger bun? Up until the mad cow disease scare of a few years ago, calf brain burgers were a regular feature on the menus of clubs and bars in St. Louis, Missouri. In Mexico, brains are still a firm favourite and they are usually served up in burritos or tacos.
9. Poisonous fish
This is probably one of the most weird and bizarre foods from around the world. Preparing the poisonous fish dish, Fugu, is such a delicate task, the Japanes chefs who prepare it have to undergo years of training and have passed a test. It’s not surprising that they have to be careful, because if they make a mistake, there is enough poison in the fish for it to be lethal. Fugu is best enjoyed with a tiny bit of the poison still in the fish, because that gives you a tingling sensation on your lips and tongue.
10. Raw blood soup
Tiet Cahn is another very unusual and bizarre food, it’s a soup dish that comes from Vietnam. The ingredients are pretty straight forward. It contains raw duck blood and chicken gizzards which are finished off with a sprinkling of herbs and peanuts. As if the blood and guts ingredients weren’t bad enough, they then refrigerate the concoction until the blood congeals and forms a jelly.