(HOSTELWORLD) It’s time to take a trip around the world and delve into all the weird foods our species like to chow down. Unfortunately, the world isn’t only full of those tasty breakfasts we spoilt you with a while back – if only. Consider this a public service and an education to save you from shock when you come across these, the 50 weirdest foods from around the world.
1.Chicken's feet - East Asia, Caribbean, South America and South Africa
Considering how many places it’s eaten, perhaps it’s unfair to deem this weird. Still, it’s made mostly of skin making it a little gelatinous in texture. They’re pretty tasty when flavoured properly, but the bones get on your nerves after a while.
|2. Haggis - Scotland|
A sheep’s heart, liver and lungs minced and mixed with onions, oatmeal, suet and seasoned with salt and spices cooked inside the animal’s stomach. If that doesn’t sound appealing, I just don’t know what will.
|3. Tripe - All Over he World|
The stomach lining of various animals with a sponge-like honeycomb texture. Looks like some weird kind of sea plant life and has a peculiar and not entirely appetising rubbery texture. Served up with various sauces to add flavour or simply with an accompaniment like onions.
|4. Khash - Middle East, East Europe and Turkey|
A pretty gruesome little dish made up of stewed cows feet and head. It was once a winter comfort food but is now considered a delicacy. I’m sure it’s fine, so long as you don’t mind that grinning skull staring at you through its cold dead eyes.
|5. Tuna eyeball - Japan|
Although it sounds nasty, apparently it’s rather tame, tasting pretty similar to squid or octopus. None of the gunk you’d normally associate with
|6. Black pudding (Blood Sausage) - Africa, Americas, Asia, Europe|
Pretty widely available, really. Still, there are a large number of people who find the idea revolting. And silly people they are as the finished product is tasty. Congealed blood cooked up with various natural flavourings, thickening agents like suet and breadcrumbs and stuffed into a sausage skin – lush!
|7. Spam - United States|
The famous mystery meat. It’s said that Spam is made from chopped pork shoulder meat, ham and potato starch, but who knows what ends up in there.
8. Hákarl – Iceland
The rotting carcass of a Greenland or basking (Somniosidae) shark. It’s buried underground in a shallow pit and pressed with stones so the poisonous internal fluids that allow it to live in such cold waters can be drained out making the meat safe to eat. After this it’s hung out to dry before being cut into strips and served. With a smell that’s described as ammonia-rich and a strong ‘fishy-flavour’, it was described by Anthony Bourdain as "the single worst, most disgusting and terrible tasting thing" he’d tried.
9. Surstromming - Sweden
Baltic Sea herring fermented with just enough salt used to prevent it from rotting. Mainly found tinned in brine these days, when opened it releases such a pungent aroma that it usually needs to be eaten outside. Sounds delightful.
10. 100 or 1000 year old egg/century egg/millenium egg - China
Yeah, OK, it’s neither a century nor a millennium old, but this egg is pretty rotten. After being preserved in a mixture of clay, ash and quicklime for a few months, the yolk turns a dark green or even black and slimy while the white has turns to a dark brown translucent jelly. Apparently it smells of strongly of sulphur and ammonia, but tastes like a hardboiled egg… until you breathe out that is.
|11. Stinkheads - Alaska, United States|
The fermented head of a king salmon, buried underground in for a few weeks and eaten as a pungent, putty-like mush. Fancy it?
|12. Shiokara - Japan|
Now this really does sound bad. A dish made of pieces of meat taken from a selection of sea creatures, served in a brown, viscous paste of their own salted and fermented viscera. Oh, I forgot to say, it’s all served raw. You enjoy, I’m going to grab a bucket.
13. Jing leed (Grassshoppers) - Thailand
So, yes, this is a big old grasshopper seasoned with salt, pepper power and chilli and fried in a big wok. Tastes a little like hollow popcorn skin… except a little juice squirts out when you bite into it… nice.
|14. Wasp Crackers - Japan|
Yep, you guessed it, it’s a biscuit filled with wasps. Think chocolate chip cookies, only the insects replace the choccy chips. Apparently the digger wasp, which the biscuit contains, has a pretty mean sting. I wish your tongue good luck.
|15. Fried spider - Cambodia|
Fried spider is a regional delicacy popular in the Cambodian town of Skuon, prepared by marinating it in MSG, sugar and salt and then frying it in garlic. Apparently it has more meat on it than a grasshopper, but also has brown sludge in the abdomen, which consists of mainly innards, eggs and excrement. Yum.
|16. Witchetty grub - Australian|
Part of the Australian ‘bushmeat’ family, this was another staple of Indigenous Australians in the desert. These can either be eaten raw, when it tastes like almonds, or lightly cooked, where its skin crisps like roast chicken and its insides take on the look and consistency of scrambled egg.
|17. Escamol - Mexico|
Also known as ‘insect caviar’, this dish is made of the edible larvae and pupae of ants, harvested from the tequila or mescal plant. Considered something of a delicacy, it is said to have the consistency of cottage cheese and a buttery, nutty taste.
|18. Beondegi - Korea|
Mmm, lovely, lovely silkworm. Simply boiled or steamed and lightly seasoned, this is popular snack all over Korea and usually sold from street vendors. Apparently they taste like wood, if you’ve ever tried wood…?
|19. Escargots à la bourguignonne – France|
Snails cooked in a sauce of white wine, garlic, butter and parsley served in their shells. Said to have a similar consistency to mussels or clams, though I found them to be pretty rubbery. Perhaps best to try in a decent, reasonably priced restaurant rather than the satay version down a back street in Hong Kong.
|20. Sago Delight - Southeast Asia|
Edible sago grubs are said to be creamy tasting when raw or meaty and like bacon when cooked. Generally seasoned and flavoured in the same way as the other Southeast Asian creepy crawly favourite, Jing Leed served alongside. My friend gaged when she ate one and said it was pregnant - a braver being than me.
|21. Stink bugs - Africa|
Used to flavour stews or eaten on their own, stinkbugs are said to have a crunch to them and taste a little like apple. Prepared by boiling, the bugs release defensive pheromones in a last ditch attempt to survive, and while it hurts the eyes it’s no more successful than the onion’s weak survival attempt.
22. Mopane worms - Southern Africa
A big fat, juicy worm that’s said to be full of meat. Although traditionally dried or smoked to preserve, they are usually rehydrated and cooked with tomato or chilli sauce to flavour. According to an American couple who tried the dish on the Food Network, it tastes like honey barbequed chicken. One to give a go, I’d say.
|23. Tequila worm - Mexico|
Not actually found in tequila but rather it’s cheaper cousin, mescal, it’s said that the legendary hallucinogenic properties of the worm are pretty much non-existent. All a marketing gimmick, you fools.
24. Marmite (or Vegemite) - UK, New Zealand & Australia
Made from yeast extract, a by-product of brewing beer, Marmite (or Vegemite as it's known as in Australia) is essentially the slurry from the bottom of the barrel that most breweries jst throw away. It's a sticky paste with a concentrated, salty flavour that's usually spread on toast or eaten with cheese. People are either 'love it or hate it'... I hate it.
25. Pickled egg - UK
Pretty much summed up in the name, this is a hardboiled egg that been left to go cold and stuck in a jar of vinegar. The sour liquid penetrates right to the heart, meaning the powdery yolk in the centre is uncomfortably sour. I’m yet to be sold on these.
26. Bird's nest soup - Southeast Asia
This Asian delicacy is made from the nest of the swiftlet bird, who instead of collecting twigs for its bed, builds it out of its own gummy saliva, which goes hard when exposed to air. Usually the built high up on cliff faces, harvesting them is a dangerous business and many people die each year. Whether its ‘rubbery taste’ is worth this human sacrifice, I’ve yet to find out.
27. Fugu - Japan
Made famous by The Simpsons, this little delicacy has the potential to be deadly if prepared incorrectly. As such, only chefs that have been drilled to perfection are allowed to handle the serving of the pufferfish. Still, it’s said to make one mean little sashimi dish.
The above news content from China Daily.