Top 10 strange foods of the world - 1
From Missouri to Scotland, from the Rocky Mountains to the Bedouin desert, from Iceland to Japan, the world cuisine is full of foods that are popular within their local milieu but are sufficient to raise quite a few eyebrows, if taken out of their native places.
Some of these foods are cooked from some of the strangest ingredients, which include animal brain, minced heart, bugs, buffalo testicles and a poisonous fish. Phew!! Just naming them can take a toll on your taste buds. Nevertheless, the journey of food is a journey into unknown, so let us go forward and learn about some of the strangest foods from around the world:
1. Snake Wine from Vietnam: Want to drink wine with a difference? Try a bouquet of snakes. Frightened? Don’t be. People in Vietnam have been enjoying their snake wine for many, many years and the wine is considered to have medicinal value as well. Snakes are left to steep in the rice wine drums for months on end till the venom dissolves into the wine. However, don’t worry about the poison part because it becomes inactive due to the ethanol present in the wine. Although the snake wine was originally made in Vietnam, it is today enjoyed in other parts of South East Asia and Southern China.
2. Haggis from Scotland: This is a traditional Scottish dish and we just had to include it into our list of top 10 strange foods of the world. This dish has the minced heart, liver and lung of a sheep, which is mixed with onion, oatmeal, spices and stock and then boiled inside a sheep’s stomach for few hours. According to a popular encyclopedia of gastronomic delights, haggis has “an excellent nutty texture and delicious savory flavor.” This dish is sold in Scottish supermarkets throughout the year.
3. Bird’s Nest Soup from China: Not many of us would think that we could eat a bird’s nest, but the Chinese think otherwise. The nest of the Swift bird is used to cook a delicious soup in China and the dish is also known as the “Caviar of the East.” The secret behind the delicious recipe is that the Swiftlets prepare their abode with saliva instead of twigs or leaves. The unique, gelatinous, rubbery texture of the saliva-made nest makes the Bird’s Nest Soup one of the most expensive animal product ever consumed by man. With Hong Kong and the US being the largest importers of this delight, a bowl of soup costs $ 30 to $ 100 while a kilo of the nest would come at a price range of $ 2,000 to $ 10,000.
4. Fried-brain Sandwiches from Missouri, US: This strange food comes from St. Louis of Missouri, US, where calves’ brain is fried and served in thin slices with white bread. While the advent of the Mad-Cow disease has led to some decrease in the consumption of this gastronomic extravaganza, the sandwich is still sold in restaurants in the Ohio River Valley.
5. Bugs from Thailand: Ever heard of 'entomophagy?' No? Well, entomophagy is the practice of eating insects for food and insects are a popular part of food chain in a number of countries around the world, except for Europe and North America. For instance, on the streets in the Thai capital, Bangkok, vendors are seen selling grasshoppers, crickets, scorpions, spiders or worms, either fried naked or after being dipped in batter. Insects are not only a rich source of protein but also contain some fatty acids as well as important vitamins. So, the next time you see a cockroach running across your kitchen floor, you know what to do, right?
(Photo courtesy - www.arch.cam.ac.uk, blog.hotelclub.com)