What’s the weirdest thing you’ve ever eaten?

Matthew and I were discussing food this morning, and he wrote me that he’d eaten all kinds of weird stuff:

Never eaten squirrel, but have eaten rabbit (obviously [JAC: he lived in France]), boar, deer, brains, hedgehog (in Africa), frogs, snails – probably much like you (except the hedgehog maybe). Oh, and “Casu mazu”: cheese containing live maggots.

He then said this: “There’s a post for you – ask readers what’s the weirdest thing they’ve ever eaten.”

Well, I have also had rabbit, boar, deer, frogs, snails, and grasshoppers, but never hedgehogs or brains, much less cheese with maggots. But the weirdest thing I’ve ever eaten was fruit flies.

I’m not talking about the occasional fly that I ingested while working with them (they fly into your mouth, and it’s not rare), but a MESS OF FLIES. In graduate school I lost a bet—I can’t remember what it was about—and as a result I had to eat a bunch of flies. I decided to sauté them in butter to help get them down. I took a bottle of flies, anesthetized them, and then dumped them into a small frying pan into which I’d melted a bunch of butter. I then sauteed them over the lab fly-food burner (there were enough to fill about half the pan), and ate several spoonfuls of them. As I recall, when someone asked me how they tasted, I said “Like shrimp, only crunchier.”

That’s my story. What’s yours–what’s the weirdest thing you’ve ever eaten?

185 Comments

  1. bonetired
    Posted September 24, 2017 at 2:04 pm | Permalink

    Some years ago, I was in Randburg, just outside Jo’burg when I was taken to a local restaurant. There I tried elephant. Not to put too fine a point on it: it was vile. Grey and rubbery.

    (PS: the elephant was from a legal cull.)

  2. Rik Smith
    Posted September 24, 2017 at 2:05 pm | Permalink

    In a former life I was a survival instructor in the USAF (before my discharge as a conscientious objector) so have eaten many weird things. But the weirdest is probably rabbit eyeballs.

    • Posted September 24, 2017 at 2:39 pm | Permalink

      Did you eat the rest of the rabbit first?

      • Rik Smith
        Posted September 24, 2017 at 2:48 pm | Permalink

        I think we always ate the eyeball first, then the rest of the beast.

    • Posted September 26, 2017 at 12:15 pm | Permalink

      I have never tried rabbit eyeballs, but have eaten rabbit, pigeon, some sort of sparrow, and some sort of bald eagle but don’t know specifics, horse, cows tongue, bone marrow and some intestines or stomach don’t remember.
      Now I’m vegan for ethical reasons. Partially inspired by Richard Dawkins’s the Selfish Gene, which gave first big picture understanding of how evolution works and part by philosopher Peter Singer.

  3. GBJames
    Posted September 24, 2017 at 2:06 pm | Permalink

    I had hippopotamus steaks when I was a young person in East Africa.

  4. YF
    Posted September 24, 2017 at 2:09 pm | Permalink

    Eating a chicken’s egg is pretty weird when you think about it. Drinking cow secretions and their fermented variations is equally weird.

  5. FB
    Posted September 24, 2017 at 2:10 pm | Permalink

    The body of Christ (I’m an ex-Catholic).

    • Jenny Haniver
      Posted September 24, 2017 at 2:49 pm | Permalink

      You hit it out of the ballpark.

    • grasshopper
      Posted September 24, 2017 at 2:51 pm | Permalink

      Ditto. Needed more salt, too.

    • Mark R.
      Posted September 24, 2017 at 2:54 pm | Permalink

      Ha!

    • kieran
      Posted September 24, 2017 at 3:06 pm | Permalink

      The moisture taker, welds to the roof of the mouth

    • Richard Portman
      Posted September 24, 2017 at 3:48 pm | Permalink

      Ha!!! Thanks:-)

    • Posted September 24, 2017 at 4:12 pm | Permalink

      I guess the blood of Christ qualifies for the “weirdest thing you’ve ever drunk.”

      I never had my First Communion before leaving the Church.

      /@

    • KD33
      Posted September 24, 2017 at 4:35 pm | Permalink

      Reminds me of a friend who wanted to market Blood ‘O’ Christ wine, in the specialty aisle next to the Manichewitz.

      • Diana MacPherson
        Posted September 24, 2017 at 6:27 pm | Permalink

        I discussed the same with the blood of Christ wine. I can’t remember what we were going to call it. Jesus blood or Jesus wine or Christ wine. Or just blood of Christ. I think we may have settled on Jesus Juice.

        • alexander
          Posted September 25, 2017 at 1:25 am | Permalink

          In Naples, Italy, you find a type of wine called Lacyma Christi, the tears of Christ. Of course Napolitans are pagans and don’t worry about Catholic dogma.

      • Bob Barber
        Posted September 25, 2017 at 8:14 am | Permalink

        Sweet Baby Jesus beer from DuClaw Brewing Company. Had a bottle last evening.

    • dabertini
      Posted September 24, 2017 at 5:37 pm | Permalink

      I think i beat you! I drank the blood of chr*st.

  6. Mark Reaume
    Posted September 24, 2017 at 2:10 pm | Permalink

    I’m not very adventurous when it comes to food but I have eaten cow tongue. It felt like I was French Kissing my food.

    • nicky
      Posted September 24, 2017 at 6:51 pm | Permalink

      ox or cow’s tongue is not weird, it is one of my favorite dishes!

  7. Diana MacPherson
    Posted September 24, 2017 at 2:19 pm | Permalink

    I had squirrel as a kid and I had some kangaroo in Australia. I think that cheese is a weird thing to eat though if you think about it.

    • Diana MacPherson
      Posted September 24, 2017 at 2:23 pm | Permalink

      I’ve eaten cow tongue as well as hen I was a kid but I don’t think that was too weird back then.

  8. alexandra Moffat
    Posted September 24, 2017 at 2:19 pm | Permalink

    too bad that we cannot remember what we ate as babies, toddlers….

    • RossR
      Posted September 24, 2017 at 2:44 pm | Permalink

      I must have been pretty small – 4, maybe 5 – when I ate a white dog turd: I refused to believe my mother when she said it was not a piece of bread.

      • Stewedprune
        Posted September 24, 2017 at 3:39 pm | Permalink

        Oh dear, it’s given me a funny feeling, reading that. When I was about the same age I regularly passed what I recognised (because of their location and appearance) to be white dog turds, or (for the avoidance of doubt) dog turds that were white. They looked rather crumbly – rather like stale bread, in fact. When you say you ‘ate’ one, do you mean you did more than pick it up and put it to (in?) your mouth? Did you not smell it first? Was your mother watching you??

        • Diana MacPherson
          Posted September 24, 2017 at 6:21 pm | Permalink

          And what were people feeding their dogs to make their 💩 white, chalk?

        • RossR
          Posted September 25, 2017 at 3:39 pm | Permalink

          I don’t remember it having any smell, but I probably didn’t swallow much. And my mother was watching, but was not given to panic.

      • BJ
        Posted September 24, 2017 at 6:22 pm | Permalink

        These days, a neighbor would have seen and called child services, which would take you and put you in foster care because your parents weren’t providing a safe environment 🙂

      • KD33
        Posted September 24, 2017 at 7:08 pm | Permalink

        Hmmm – I saw a grown-up acquaintance, after too much drinking, try to replicate the famous scene from Pink Flamingos. He did not get very far.

  9. Simon Hayward
    Posted September 24, 2017 at 2:19 pm | Permalink

    I’ve never eaten hedgehog, but have had the other things listed. I had brains in hospital in southern France once in the early 80s, we had a motorcycle accident and they had just given my girlfriend at the time an EEG, when brains turned up for lunch (a complete ovine brain on a plate with a tomato-based sauce as I recall), she was not totally impressed – neither was I really, didn’t like the flavor or texture.

    Crickets, mealworms (no drosophila though). Cricket tacos are pretty good, nutty with a lot of crunchy legs. Rattlesnake and alligator. Most of the common marine mollusks. Elk, never eaten moose though. Most internal organs of most common farm animals. But really I’m not sure any of this is that odd/unusual. I did have minke whale once, in Norway at a conference dinner. It just turned up, not something I would have ordered. It was actually surprisingly good, when I got past my disapproval of what it was (which was not going to bring it back to life). It was very tender and tasted more like rich beef than anything else, I had rather expected a fishy flavor.

  10. barn owl
    Posted September 24, 2017 at 2:19 pm | Permalink

    A soft-shelled crab “specialty” that someone insisted that I try when I lived in Maryland. The crab was slightly crunchy, and essentially like a giant cockroach sandwich, perhaps because it was towards the end of the season for such things. Or maybe it’s always like that … I don’t know, because I’ve never eaten another soft-shelled crab.

    • Newish Gnu
      Posted September 24, 2017 at 5:55 pm | Permalink

      Marylander here. Softshelled crabs never appealed to me either. I try one every few years just to see if my tastes have changed. I do the same thing with grits. My tastes haven’t changed. Grits seem to taste better the stuff you put in to disguise the grits.

      • Newish Gnu
        Posted September 24, 2017 at 5:55 pm | Permalink

        …the more stuff you put in …

      • darrelle
        Posted September 25, 2017 at 8:20 am | Permalink

        Agree mostly about grits. It isn’t that they taste bad, they are pretty much tasteless. They can be good if you add enough good stuff. Stock, butter, cheese. Grits as they are typically served at southern breakfast joints are worthless.

    • Merilee
      Posted September 24, 2017 at 9:20 pm | Permalink

      I LOVE Maryland soft-shell crab♥️

      • Posted September 25, 2017 at 7:33 am | Permalink

        Oh, Hank, yes!

        Crab is heaven!

        • Merilee
          Posted September 25, 2017 at 10:18 am | Permalink

          Hank??

          • Posted September 25, 2017 at 11:02 am | Permalink

            Yes, Hank ! 🙂

            • Merilee
              Posted September 25, 2017 at 7:24 pm | Permalink

              Um what does kissing Hank’s ass have to do with Maryland softshell crab, pr*y tell?

              • Posted September 26, 2017 at 7:14 am | Permalink

                It’s a funny, sarcastic, euphemism for “god”. 🙂

              • Merilee
                Posted September 26, 2017 at 10:06 am | Permalink

                Guess I gotcha:-)

  11. FH
    Posted September 24, 2017 at 2:20 pm | Permalink

    I guess the most unusual thing I’ve eaten were horse testicles slow cooked in saffron stock… those were delicious btw, and I can only recommend them.

    I’m in general a huge fan of offal cuisine and have tried and liked pretty much everything, from brains over tongues to hearts and spleens. I’m European though and a lot of that is pretty standard here.

    I’ve never tried insects and have no intention to. It’s the only thing I can’t bring myself to put in my mouth. I know it’s irrational but the thought alone makes me want to throw up.

    • Posted September 25, 2017 at 12:58 am | Permalink

      Yeah, I’m a great fan of Lyonnais andouilette, a sausage made from tripes. Absolutely delicious! Not really weird, tho. Also ris de veau, for some reason called sweetbreads in english.

      • Posted September 25, 2017 at 7:34 am | Permalink

        Sweetbreads (thymus gland) are wonderful (taste, texture) if properly prepared. Love them!

  12. shelleywatsonburch
    Posted September 24, 2017 at 2:20 pm | Permalink

    Not sure if these would be considered weird, but I’ve eaten all sorts of things: squirrel, frog, crickets, tarantula, shark in addition to game like moose, wild rabbit, bear. I’ll try anything! So much of what we consider food is cultural.

    • Diana MacPherson
      Posted September 24, 2017 at 2:40 pm | Permalink

      Does tarantula taste like crab? I always thought it would.

  13. shelleywatsonburch
    Posted September 24, 2017 at 2:21 pm | Permalink

    Oh! And camel, delicious BTW, and balut which is much better than you’d expect.

  14. Posted September 24, 2017 at 2:26 pm | Permalink

    Snake, prepared by a Chinese friend. Tastes a bit like chewy fish. Lots of bones.

  15. Posted September 24, 2017 at 2:27 pm | Permalink

    A few things come to mind:

    Mojave Green Rattlesnake, cooked on a campfire. Poor, but maybe I cooked it wrong.

    Raw sea urchin. OK.

    Deep fried whole crab — shell and all, dried. Terrible.

    • BJ
      Posted September 24, 2017 at 6:24 pm | Permalink

      I had fried rattlesnake in Arizona, and it tasted just like fried chicken. I guess it’s all in the preparation.

  16. revelator60
    Posted September 24, 2017 at 2:37 pm | Permalink

    Lamb’s brains in a pâté (good) and durian pudding (weird texture and smell but good, I think).

  17. Posted September 24, 2017 at 2:38 pm | Permalink

    Well, indeed it’s “casu marzu”, literally “rotten cheese”, a delicacy (!) from my home island of Sardinia. I ate it several times many years ago but nowadays I wouldn’t (by the way it’s illegal).
    I ate everything listed by Matthew (I’d try the squirrel too), plus quails et similia not to mention many kinds of seafood).
    The weirdest (but in the good sense) are the “Ortsiaras”, fried “sea anemones”, Actiniae.
    Yummy!

  18. Janet
    Posted September 24, 2017 at 2:45 pm | Permalink

    In Japan we were served live abalone which we were supposed to cook on our tiny plateside hibachics. When we first sat down all we saw was the gorgeous display of beautiful foods but then ome after the other of us started saying ‘that one is movin’!

    • jay
      Posted September 24, 2017 at 2:50 pm | Permalink

      Worked for a while in Japan. Co workers enjoyed prompting me to eat odd things. Sea cucumber was like rubber, sea urchin was like fish flavored jello. And then there was the live shrimp.

  19. Posted September 24, 2017 at 2:46 pm | Permalink

    Someone just reminded me on Twitter – chocolate-covered ants! They used to sell them in the food hall of Lewis’s Department Store in central Manchester (now turned into a Primark). Interesting mixture of sweet and crunchy. The casu marzu tasted of vomit btw, and I made sure I chewed the maggots up. – MC

    • Jenny Haniver
      Posted September 24, 2017 at 3:09 pm | Permalink

      When I was about 10 or 11, a boy down the street would sometimes come over, but was oblivious to polite signals that it was time to go home, and wouldn’t leave until he was told to do so. My parents and I were tired of his imposition. He knew better but didn’t care. One day when he came by, I remembered that as a novelty, my dad had once brought home a can of either chocolate-covered ants or fried grasshoppers (can’t recall which), which had been sitting in the cupboard for eons. Since this boy never refused a snack, I opened the can, poured the contents into a bowl and without saying anything, I casually put them on the coffee table. He reflexively reached for them and popped a handful or two in his mouth. Then I told him what they were. I don’t recall his immediate response, but he didn’t impose on us any longer. However, I do know that his persistent, intrusive behavior has followed him throughout his life, and only gotten worse — pathological IMO. Weird animal snacks wouldn’t faze him at all now.

    • darrelle
      Posted September 25, 2017 at 8:32 am | Permalink

      I’ve had chocolate covered ants! Pretty much like a Nestle crunch bar.

      I also once took a well masticated blob of bubble gum out of my mouth, used it like a sticky trap to pick some ants then popped it back in my mouth and ate them. It was one of those double-dog-dare-you situations when I was about 8 years old.

  20. teacupoftheapocalypse
    Posted September 24, 2017 at 2:49 pm | Permalink

    Sea urchin. Once eaten, never forgotten. And never eaten again, though some consider it a delicacy.

    It must be a delicacy, otherwise they wouldn’t serve it in sashimi restaurants would they? Would they?

    • Mark R.
      Posted September 24, 2017 at 2:56 pm | Permalink

      I love Uni. You probably didn’t have fresh. You pretty much need to eat it the same day it’s harvested. If not it can be disgusting. It is very mild when fresh.

      • Simon Hayward
        Posted September 24, 2017 at 4:36 pm | Permalink

        I agree, love fresh uni. I remember many years ago people harvesting and eating sea urchin on the beach in Sicily. It was the first time I’d ever considered that the spiky balls might have a function beyond leaving spines in your foot.

  21. Mark R.
    Posted September 24, 2017 at 2:59 pm | Permalink

    cow balls, brains and alligator (all deep fried and tasty). Fish stomach and sea cucumber (both gross). Pig head in tacos, very tender and delicious.

  22. Randy schenck
    Posted September 24, 2017 at 3:01 pm | Permalink

    Not really that strange eating rabbit or squirrel. They are both rather common in many parts of the country and pretty typical in the Midwest when I was a child. After removing the head and skinning they are gutted. Recommend soaking overnight in salt water.

  23. TWJohnson
    Posted September 24, 2017 at 3:05 pm | Permalink

    Dog stew in rural Korea wasn’t bad, but the dog skin that hadn’t been adequately de-furred was something I’d go far out of my way to avoid eating again.

  24. Diana MacPherson
    Posted September 24, 2017 at 3:08 pm | Permalink

    This post reminds me of the song for the Simpson’s character, Cletus the Slack-jawed Yokel.

  25. Jeff Rankin
    Posted September 24, 2017 at 3:11 pm | Permalink

    Frog legs: I don’t consider eating them weird but I know others who do and wouldn’t touch them. It’s too bad, they’re delicious.

    Last time I had them they were fresh as they could be, we had gone frog-gigging the night before while on vacation in Kentucky and had caught many.

  26. FB
    Posted September 24, 2017 at 3:21 pm | Permalink

    Buche de ñandú (rhea americana’s crop). Traditional mapuche medicine for stomach ache that my granpda used to give me. Dried and crushed with the handle of a knife. Tastes a bit like sand.

    • Diana MacPherson
      Posted September 24, 2017 at 6:19 pm | Permalink

      Did it help with the stomach ache?

      • FB
        Posted September 24, 2017 at 6:56 pm | Permalink

        I don’t think so.

  27. pck
    Posted September 24, 2017 at 3:24 pm | Permalink

    Milbenkäse, a delicious creamy cheese covered entirely in thousands of tiny mites.

    • pck
      Posted September 24, 2017 at 3:25 pm | Permalink

      I forgot to mention that the mites are of course still alive.

  28. John J. Fitzgerald
    Posted September 24, 2017 at 3:31 pm | Permalink

    U.S. Army C rations. The worst one was Lima Beans and Ham.

    John J. Fitzgerald

  29. Posted September 24, 2017 at 3:36 pm | Permalink

    Fried elk heart.

    • Posted September 24, 2017 at 3:40 pm | Permalink

      But I’ve also eat the hair off a pig cooked in the ground in Papua New Guinea.

      Some might find nutritional yeast strange–most in the U.K. I mention it to don’t know it. I’ve eaten lots of this.

      Recently I had eggs boiled in tea.

      I’ve had crocodile; “tastes like chicken”.

      • Posted September 24, 2017 at 4:18 pm | Permalink

        Alligator. (In the Gaylord in Florida.)

        More like a game bird than chicken.

        /@

  30. amyt
    Posted September 24, 2017 at 3:55 pm | Permalink

    Definition of “eaten”. MUST be chewed. No nose holding. No throwing it in the back of the throat. Chewed!!
    Bogong moths in Australia. Gag!!
    There’s always a danger when you go out to eat with biologists. This was also in Australia. About a dozen of us were eating at a local favorite Indian restaurant. Large plates of various dishes served family style.
    Really spicy hot (made me sweat!!). As we dove into the chicken someone grabbed a leg and declared “This is not chicken!! This is cat.”
    I was horrified.

  31. Posted September 24, 2017 at 4:02 pm | Permalink

    I don’t know about weird, but probably the most unpleasant was Mett – raw, minced marinaded pork served on a bread roll, which I experienced in eastern Germany some years back. One of our team, instead of bringing cakes in on her birthday, brought this stuff and as I was new to the country it seemed rude to refuse, but it was a bit grim.

  32. Steve Pollard
    Posted September 24, 2017 at 4:02 pm | Permalink

    Cooked tongue is on sale in most UK supermarkets and is plainly still popular. I’ve eaten eland, gazelle and crocodile tail (in Zimbabwe and South Africa), dog (in Korea: very nasty), and fruit bat (at an Army jungle training establishment in Brunei: very tasty).

    • Posted September 24, 2017 at 4:20 pm | Permalink

      Tongue was a staple for Saturday tea when I was young.

      /@

    • garman
      Posted September 25, 2017 at 1:20 pm | Permalink

      And the Lord did grin. And the people did feast upon the lambs, and sloths, and carp, and anchovies, and orangutans, and breakfast cereals, and fruit bats, and …

  33. John Frum
    Posted September 24, 2017 at 4:20 pm | Permalink

    Australian eastern brown snake, supposedly the deadliest snake here.
    We were burning off some fallen trees up the back of my place and the digger drove over the snake so we threw it on the fire.
    It started to look quite nice so I grabbed it and took a bite.
    It was rather nice, similar to a thick, white fish flesh.
    It wasn’t until much later that I realised I didn’t even think about not eating the venom sack.
    I regularly eat kangaroo as it’s available in supermarkets and is quite cheap, and also crocodile but that’s quite expensive ($50 per kg).
    I have had camel but it wasn’t good. Very tough like old boots.
    In south east Asia I have had crickets, grasshoppers, bee larvae, deep fried frogs, chicken hearts (very nice).
    On a Vietnam cycling tour I wanted to try deep fried rats they were selling on the side of the road but the guide said not to as they might have disease.

    • Posted September 24, 2017 at 4:39 pm | Permalink

      [insert clip from Demolition Man here]

      /@

    • Wotan Nichols
      Posted September 25, 2017 at 6:21 am | Permalink

      I recall reading that at least some snake venom is perfectly harmless if ingested. Rattlesnake venom supposedly tastes sweet.

  34. Graham Martin-Royle
    Posted September 24, 2017 at 4:22 pm | Permalink

    Various different antelope, wild boar, giraffe (all in Africa), various grubs Etc (also in Africa), porcupine at a roadside cafe (Africa again), monkey (don’t know what species, Africa again). I ate quite a lot of weird stuff while crossing Africa.

  35. wmelchior
    Posted September 24, 2017 at 4:26 pm | Permalink

    1) In Peru, guinea pig (“cuy”) is a staple. We visited several homes where they were raised, roaming free, in the kitchen. The cathedral in Cuzco has a painting of the last supper with a guinea pig as rhe main course in the center of the table.

    2) in Iceland, dried shark (“kæstur hákarl”) — not for the faint of heart. It’s marginally better after a brief soak in akavit.

    • Posted September 24, 2017 at 4:38 pm | Permalink

      (2) sounds worse than lutefisk!

      /@

      • Posted September 24, 2017 at 4:56 pm | Permalink

        Oh, yeah. Lutefisk, I’ve had that too. But it’s not really weird is it?, just not very good. But some places people really like it.

  36. Blue
    Posted September 24, 2017 at 4:28 pm | Permalink

    The Forestry Department’s Annual Wild Game / Spring Honors’ Banquet I was for some years to facilitate as that Department’s undergraduate advising secretary. Its major’s students from the countryside’s yon and hither busied with their studies would stop by me in the Front Office with their suggestions as to whom I could contact for its solicitations and subsequent recipes therefor.

    I started in the autumns afore the banquets’ usual April date of the next year; and by banquet week ‘d have amassed and rounded up to the University’s kitchen freezers quite a variety of … … wild game meats. All I tried to make certain legally taken before the meats’ acceptances.

    Beaver tail and rattlesnake were okay, o’possum was .not. okay, and there was always, always the array of other usual woodsy critters of the Midwest and Western hoofed genre and treetop types. All manner of water and ground fowls as well. Some usual of the fresh water fishes, not ever much in the way of exotic aquatic meats within a landlocked Plains’ state.

    Like Ms MacPherson as a child my mama cooked beef tongue often, also beef heart; and pig brains she would cut in to beefburger in order to try to enlarge its larder for hungry younglings. I ate it all down; others in the family she could never seem to fool.

    When the pantry was empty, then Daddy would always, always at supper’s end thank my Mama for the Karo Syrup along with fresh whole Guernsey’s milk (its cream still hand – whipped throughout it) poured over homemade white bread chunked inside a bowl. When .that. was it.

    Blue

  37. KD33
    Posted September 24, 2017 at 4:33 pm | Permalink

    1) Crispy red ants on a salad. This is not actually so exotic, but I mention it because it was pretty good, a little crunchy and tangy.

    2) Scorpions, in Beijing. Again, actually not that exotic. They were fried and arranged nicely around the edge of a large decorative plate. A little chewy, tasted like bland bacon.

  38. Posted September 24, 2017 at 4:33 pm | Permalink

    A few years ago in Tokyo, a few of my colleagues and I went to dinner in a sushi restaurant in the shopping mall near our conference hotel. They had a picture menu with names and descriptions only in Japanese – and the staff spoke very little English (but more than we spoke Japanese!). We ordered a mixed platter with a few other things that folks recognised.

    Among other things on the platter were two pieces none of us recognised – longish tapering pieces, rough on the upper side, smoother below. The taste was vaguely fishy, neither particularly tasty nor unpleasant, but the mouthfeel was unlike any other kind of fish or meat – it was crunchy like crudités.

    We never properly identified it, but from the shape and surface texture my best guess is starfish arm.

    /@

  39. Richard Portman
    Posted September 24, 2017 at 4:33 pm | Permalink

    Pine Beetle grubs. Buprestidae. Hard to come by unless you spend all summer stripping bark off logs intended for pole fences, etc.
    They are delicious. Taste like a mix of pine nuts and bacon. Toast them. Raw would be too weird.
    My pal would help me gather them but never did partake. We loved each other but no way he’s gonna eat grubs.
    Come to think, most of the really weird foods are in the supermarket.

  40. Bill Keen
    Posted September 24, 2017 at 4:36 pm | Permalink

    Once on a beach in South Africa, I walked through a miasma of sand hoppers, the little critters that tickle you toes when you dig your feet in the sand, and hop madly above ground. There were so many of them pinging everywhere that I could hardly see my feet. We had a tupperware bowl with us, so I scooped a hundred or two out of the air in front of my knees and closed the lid quickly. On the walk back we were accompanied by the steady pitter patter of hoppers hitting plastic. By the time the fire was going and the pan hot, they had calmed down a bit, but when I opened the lid and dumped them in they sprang everywhere. A small proportion didn’t bounce and fried up very well, like little shrimps.

  41. Gregory Kusnick
    Posted September 24, 2017 at 4:41 pm | Permalink

    I’m not talking about the occasional fly that I ingested while working with them (they fly into your mouth, and it’s not rare)

    I’d advise against swallowing a spider as a remedy. That never ends well.

    I can’t top some of the stories above, but living in a coastal city, I regularly eat all manner of seafood including whole baby octopus, squid cooked in its own ink, prawns with head and legs still attached, and of course live oysters by the dozen. But I’ve also sat across the table from people who consider all of this beyond the pale.

    Just last week I had dinner with a young student who, on being served a smoked fish appetizer, said “I don’t think I’ve ever eaten fish before.” That’s weird.

    • Diana MacPherson
      Posted September 24, 2017 at 6:30 pm | Permalink

      Haha it was a horse, of course.

      • Merilee
        Posted September 24, 2017 at 9:28 pm | Permalink

        +1

  42. Andrew
    Posted September 24, 2017 at 4:49 pm | Permalink

    I ate zebra pizza at the Kilderkin pub in Edinburgh.

    • Posted September 24, 2017 at 5:03 pm | Permalink

      Now that’s genuinely weird. Actually it’s hard to see what’s so weird about super market stuff like reindeer, ostrich or kangaroo steaks. Surprisingly many people seem to think eating tongue is odd.

      I suppose folks far away from the Baltic would consider Hippophaë rhamnoides berries (tyrni, finnbär) kind of weird. They are fairly common here up North.

      • DiscoveredJoys
        Posted September 25, 2017 at 2:27 am | Permalink

        I cooked ostrich in black bean sauce for a Chinese themed dinner party. It was fine, although I’m not sure (nor worried about) how many other cultures I was appropriating.

  43. Posted September 24, 2017 at 5:01 pm | Permalink

    I suppose fried ants. I have eaten a number of fried insects, but those were pretty bad. So the weirdest.

  44. Marina
    Posted September 24, 2017 at 5:03 pm | Permalink

    I’d say jellyfish, tasting exactly like cellophane (Chinese specialty) and cod necks, this a Basque Country delicate treat,while in Australia I refused to taste a giant white raw worm, sliced, and my curious me is still sorry for it

    • Jonathan Wallace
      Posted September 25, 2017 at 6:43 am | Permalink

      I agree entirely with your assessment of the culinary qualities of jellyfish.

  45. Posted September 24, 2017 at 5:14 pm | Permalink

    Don’t know what it was, but it was cold, wiggly, and hidden in a truck stop hot dog.

  46. W.Benson
    Posted September 24, 2017 at 5:48 pm | Permalink

    Iguana rice stew, French creole style. Delicious and highly recommended.

  47. mirandaga
    Posted September 24, 2017 at 5:51 pm | Permalink

    When I lived in Greece for three years I ate lamb testicles and fish eyes. But probably the weirdest thing I’ve eaten is dog. This was in Conakry, West Africa, when the ship I was teaching on, World Campus Afloat, docked in Conakry in 1968–the first Americans to be there since the Peace Corps had been kicked out some years earlier when Conakry went socialist. The locals made a big fuss over us and after a tour invited us to an outdoor feast at a base of a beautiful waterfall. The main item on the menu was dog, and it would have been impolite not to partake. It wasn’t bad.

    Incidentally, the tour included huge parking lots full of snowmobiles that had been given as gifts from both Russia and the U.S. in an effort to win over the Guinean government. Apparently it didn’t occur to either us or the Ruskies that, while Conakry has a wet season and a dry season, the temperature never gets below 70!

  48. Newish Gnu
    Posted September 24, 2017 at 6:02 pm | Permalink

    Muskrat, mink, raccoon. My brother and I trapped and hunted in our teen years. We’d try anything and our mother indulged us by cooking it. Generally pan-fried like chicken. I don’t remember any of it being noticeably wonderful or terrible.

    Also, night crawlers (large worms). Cut off the ends and squeeze out the guts. Sautéed with mushrooms. Chewy like overcooked squid. Not especially good.

  49. TWJohnson
    Posted September 24, 2017 at 6:10 pm | Permalink

    A listing like this should probably include notice of the 2000 Ig Nobel Prize in Biology awarded to Richard Wassersug for his first-hand report “On the Comparative Palatability of Some Dry-Season Tadpoles from Costa Rica.” The American Midland Naturalist, vol. 86, no. 1, July 1971, pp. 101-9. He reported that some were and some were not.

    • Gregory Kusnick
      Posted September 24, 2017 at 6:25 pm | Permalink

      And let’s not forget this.

  50. S.A. native
    Posted September 24, 2017 at 6:13 pm | Permalink

    Possum, when I was about seven. My brother had killed it at my grandmother’s place the day before. I thought she was spoofing when she told us it was that possum we were having for lunch.

  51. Merilee
    Posted September 24, 2017 at 6:24 pm | Permalink

    Fried lamb’s blood in Martinique when I was a kid and rattlesnake cakes free-range, no less) in Torrey, Utah.

  52. Rachel
    Posted September 24, 2017 at 6:32 pm | Permalink

    I had pickled jellyfish in Japan. It was kind of tasteless but crunchy.

    • Hempenstein
      Posted September 24, 2017 at 7:39 pm | Permalink

      Had the same in a Chinese restaurant in Chinatown NYC long ago. Same impression plus somewhat salty. I’d order it again, tho.

      Also tasted a raw jellyfish (Periphylla periphylla) tentacle on my last field biology collecting expedition in Norway 10yrs ago. They don’t sting like Chesapeak Bay jellyfish, and I’d heard that an Asian guy had chowed down on some, but they did leave a sensation on my tongue that lasted for hours. Not painful, just I knew exactly what part of my mouth had come in contact with it.

  53. chris
    Posted September 24, 2017 at 6:46 pm | Permalink

    Well I didn’t eat it myself because it looked and smelled disgusting but my husband tried some canned seal blubber once. (As best as I recall he ate a small spoonful and threw the rest out.)

    • Posted September 25, 2017 at 6:18 am | Permalink

      Smoked seal is delicious. To be had in Norway.

  54. Posted September 24, 2017 at 6:51 pm | Permalink

    Locusts
    Mopane worms
    Dried crickets
    Lambs’ testicles

  55. Posted September 24, 2017 at 7:03 pm | Permalink

    1. As a kid, tiny little birds my brother would kill with his slingshot; wasp larvae; cotton tufts from the underside of my bed.
    2. A kind of blood custard made by my mother. Chicken blood was drained after a fresh kill and then kept in a cool place till it set (gelled a bit). Then she would carefully cube it and gently slide it into hot oil along with chicken hearts and ch. liver, ginger and green onions and a little soy sauce (IIRC). Most delicious.
    3. Sea cucumber, abalone, eel, fish air-bladder, sea urchin, octopus ink, stinky cured fish, frog legs, soup made from bull testicles, tripe, cow tongue, pigs’ feet, pigs’ tail, oxtail, tiger lily roots, strange Chinese herbal soups, natural penicillin (i.e. mold!). Most of them delicious.

    • Posted September 25, 2017 at 12:34 am | Permalink

      Is eel weird? Jellied eels were a British staple. And I’ve had delicious smoked eel at Japanese restaurants a couple of times. (Once at the great noodle restaurant in Phoenix that Ben knows.)

      /@

      • Jonathan Wallace
        Posted September 25, 2017 at 6:45 am | Permalink

        Eel is delicious.

      • Posted September 27, 2017 at 3:13 pm | Permalink

        My mother cooked them for us when we were kids. Most delicious. I forgot to add birds’ nest soup, baby pigeons, eggs containing baby chicks, chicken feet, and fish head/eyes. My folks used to eat weird stuff.

  56. nicky
    Posted September 24, 2017 at 7:08 pm | Permalink

    Weird is in the eye of the beholder. crocodile tastes like fibrous chicken, frog legs (danseuses) a bit like egg.
    Ate caterpillars, but those Zaìrese found it a delicacy. same for Mopane worms.
    squid and octopus are weird too, because they are weird animals. Never ate the still living octopus arms though (Korean specialty).
    Are mussels -live oysters-, snails and slugs weird? I did eat dog in the Philippines, but never cat in Vietnam. I guess the weirdest was preserved human brain, by accident though.

    Most of the stuff mentioned here is of animal origin, even the rotten milk called cheese. come to think of it, isn’t eating grass weird? Most of our starches are grasses.

  57. JonLynnHarvey
    Posted September 24, 2017 at 7:11 pm | Permalink

    Had some exotic but pleasant stuff during the summer I lived in Shanghai, China, but at this point I don’t remember what it was. I think there was some jellyfish in there somewhere.

    Two half-way entries.

    Weirdest thing I ever drunk was a ginger-blackberry tea which I thought was revolting, which is unusual since I usually take to anything ginger like a cat to catnip.

    Weirdest thing someone else thought I was eating was when I was at a restaurant with a friend in Ohio who was revolted by my selection of “artichoke heart”- he did not know artichoke was a vegetable.

    • Merilee
      Posted September 24, 2017 at 9:32 pm | Permalink

      “Artichoke heart” – lol

      • dabertini
        Posted September 25, 2017 at 7:14 am | Permalink

        What’s Miss Piggy’s line about artichokes? “You get more energy by licking a stamp than eating an artichoke.”

    • Posted September 25, 2017 at 4:15 am | Permalink

      One of my favourite dishes in Bulgaria was fried chicken hearts – delicious! I thought it very unusual at the time, but a quick google shows that they are available in the UK.

      • Jonathan Wallace
        Posted September 25, 2017 at 6:46 am | Permalink

        And very tasty too.

      • Posted September 25, 2017 at 7:48 am | Permalink

        I’ve had them in Brazilian “barbecue” restaurants (I can’t remember the Brazilian name – begins with a “c”) in the UK and US.

        /@

  58. Ullrich Fischer
    Posted September 24, 2017 at 7:13 pm | Permalink

    Does apple pie with ketchup on top count? Turns out it is not as delicious as you might think! 🙂

  59. James Walker
    Posted September 24, 2017 at 7:14 pm | Permalink

    Horse carpaccio (i.e sliced raw horse meat) in Hokkaido.

    There are things I’ve eaten in China that were pretty weird that I didn’t inquire too closely into …

  60. Hempenstein
    Posted September 24, 2017 at 7:56 pm | Permalink

    Many consider souse loaf (head cheese with vinegar) weird, but I like it, especially if it has hot peppers in it.

    Lots of other things I’ve tried have been mentioned above.

    And I had a vegetarian roommate in college who happily eats nonvertebrates. He used to get rather large cans of fried grasshoppers – from Africa as I recall. Crunchy, like the edges of fried chicken. I wouldn’t mind a tin of them now.

    Then there was surströmming (fermented herring – the stuff that comes in the cans that buckle out from the sulfurous gases given off by the fermentation), in Sweden. A traditional food from the far northern sections where (I was told) they couldn’t afford salt to preserve their fish (it doesn’t get hot enough to evaporate seawater). Typically consumed at parties wrapped in flatbread with onions, along with liberal amounts of schnapps and beer. A guy at the party from the north of Sweden had one piece. I had two. Don’t remember it tasting like much.

    But I met my match with pickled Thai mudfish. I remember it came in a jar with a yellow label, so this may be it. I couldn’t get past a taste – didn’t go so far as try to chew.

    • Posted September 24, 2017 at 8:14 pm | Permalink

      Fried grasshoppers are not bad. In parts of Africa – Malawi, Zambia – you used to be able to get a roadside snack of Ruspolia bushcrickets that had been fried on a piece of tin or old shovel. They would swarm in huge numbers in late summer and as they had quite a lot of meat and oil in them would fry well. Sold by old ladies on the roadside and presented wrapped up in newspaper. A bit of ‘Aromat’ (a sort of salt and spice mix) and they really were quite…ok. If you were hungry.

      • Gregory Kusnick
        Posted September 24, 2017 at 8:24 pm | Permalink

        I’d be game for the crickets, but the old shovel might give me pause. Who knows where it’s been?

    • gscott
      Posted September 24, 2017 at 10:32 pm | Permalink

      Durian
      Hakarl
      Surstromming
      The Body of Christ, as served by the Archbishop of Athens
      Three-snake wine (Chinese), with the three snakes in the bottle
      But the most disgusting was Sulze in Bavaria (same as souse/headcheese)

      Are these things weird? People in other parts of the world consider them delicacies. I kind of liked the hakarl – like blue cheese with an ammonia aftertaste.

  61. Posted September 24, 2017 at 8:46 pm | Permalink

    My mom could cook most anything harvested by her hunter/fisherman son. Add to the “not really weird” foods: snapping turtle.

    My dad constructed a good sized turtle trap so turtle soup was a favorite (actually a rich stew). I enjoyed examining the cervical vertebrae.

  62. Posted September 24, 2017 at 8:56 pm | Permalink

    Headcheese. I don’t want to talk about it 😉😖😂

  63. Brian
    Posted September 24, 2017 at 9:59 pm | Permalink

    When I was a student at military school two generations ago I had some pals from Latin America. One got a package from his parents containing some tins containing what he described as candy from my country. He then encouraged his buddies to try it. It looked like shredded coconut but the color was brown with flecks of red, orange and yellow. After we all chowed down he informed us that it was roasted and shredded bees, wasps and ants held together by honey. It tasted earthy and odd but neutral rather than pleasant. I tried it again the next day with him smiling broadly and still did not like it.

  64. kelskye
    Posted September 24, 2017 at 11:51 pm | Permalink

    Once I ordered eel at a Japanese restaurant, and was disappointed when it turned out to look and taste like fish. Don’t know why I should have expected anything different in hindsight. I’ve also eaten baby octopus, which seems to gross some people out.

    Being an Aussie, I’ve eaten kangaroo and emu. When I was in Finland, I tried moose, reindeer, and boar. I also tried the local specialty blood sausage.

    And probably not that weird if you’re Korean, but I’ve really gotten into kimchi.

    • Jonathan Wallace
      Posted September 25, 2017 at 6:48 am | Permalink

      Octopus is delicious. Why would it gross anyone out?

      • Posted September 25, 2017 at 7:24 am | Permalink

        Indeed! All molluscs are delicious in my opinion.

      • Posted September 25, 2017 at 7:56 am | Permalink

        I have qualms because of how smart octopodes are.

        /@

        • Diana MacPherson
          Posted September 25, 2017 at 11:08 am | Permalink

          Me too!

  65. Posted September 24, 2017 at 11:52 pm | Permalink

    Ecuador: guineau pig, of course which was much better than the smoked king beetle larvae.

    Cambodia: tarantula.

    • Merilee
      Posted September 25, 2017 at 9:54 am | Permalink

      Do they de-fuzz the tarantula??

  66. Posted September 24, 2017 at 11:52 pm | Permalink

    Ecuador: guineau pig, of course which was much better than the smoked king beetle larvae.

    Cambodia: tarantula.

  67. alexander
    Posted September 25, 2017 at 1:30 am | Permalink

    In New Haven Ct there was a delicatessen store that sold chocolate-covered ants.

  68. Posted September 25, 2017 at 1:49 am | Permalink

    https://www.theguardian.com/travel/2017/sep/24/insect-backyard-restaurant-bangkok-thailand-changchui : “Insects have long been a staple in the countryside of Thailand. Now, a top chef is creating a buzz in Bangkok by putting this eco-friendly protein on the menu”

    /@

  69. Pierluigi Ballabeni
    Posted September 25, 2017 at 2:32 am | Permalink

    Perhaps the weirdest think I have eaten is the sea anemone Anemonia sulcata. It is eaten in Spain, around Cádiz and in the Ebro Delta, Catalonia. It seems to be unknown in other places of the Spanish coast. I read that it is also eaten in some parts of Italy.

    Rabbit is not only eaten in France but also in many other european countries. The same for frogs and snails. They are not weird food to me. I find porridge way more exotic and weird.

    • Pierluigi Ballabeni
      Posted September 25, 2017 at 6:51 am | Permalink

      I forgot: I ate whale once in Norway. The meat was so lean that it had no taste.

  70. DiscoveredJoys
    Posted September 25, 2017 at 2:34 am | Permalink

    I ordered Chinese food in a restaurant in Cardiff and it included ‘special fried rice’ which contained (amongst other things) tiny baby starfish (about the size of a penny). I’ve also eaten lotus root in a Korean restaurant which is not weird in itself but looked like a small wagon wheel.

  71. jinchuah
    Posted September 25, 2017 at 2:38 am | Permalink

    While in China, I’ve eaten deep fried scorpions, snake soup and other snake dishes. When I was a kid I ate fried chilli frog, turtle soup and pig brain, which the Chinese believe would make you smarter. 🙂

  72. Posted September 25, 2017 at 5:07 am | Permalink

    Mine include ostrich (tastes like beef), baby octopi, toad, snake, deep-fried tarantulas (10/10 would recommend), and guilty, shark fin soup (tasteless, texture is halfway between bean sprouts and vermicelli).

    • Posted September 25, 2017 at 7:52 am | Permalink

      Ostrich doesn‘t seem weird to me. It’s farmed locally (Lincolnshire) and ostrich burgers have been on sale at the Christmas market for several years now. It is like beef, only leaner.

      /@

  73. Richard Bond
    Posted September 25, 2017 at 5:30 am | Permalink

    Ostrich and Gnu are fairly mainstream in Kenya. I have bought both from a little supermarket that used to exist in Bamburi on the main road north of Mombasa. A couple of kilometres south of that there is a crocodile farm. I know that everybody claims that it tastes like chicken, but I thought that it was more like slightly chewy monkfish. I have also eaten giraffe, neck fillet (of course); it was tough and tasteless.

    The aptly named Carnivore restaurant in Nairobi used to serve barbecued game meat, until wild game meat was banned in 2004. You could sample something like 8-10 different animals. My favourite was Hartebeest: very tender, delicate and slightly sweet.

    • Posted September 25, 2017 at 5:46 am | Permalink

      There’s always the one in Joburg (if it’s still there – Carnivore, not Jozi): zebra is not bad, camel (which I also had in the Nairobi one) was disappointing. Kudu is delicious, as is impala. Sigh – off to eat my veggie pasta dish now 😦

      • Posted September 25, 2017 at 6:41 am | Permalink

        Antelope are now very threatened. Bush meat is a bad thing 😦 …
        We are down to the last 14,000 Giant Eland for example.
        http://www.iucnredlist.org/current-news

        • Posted September 25, 2017 at 8:35 am | Permalink

          True but in SA most of the game meat is not ‘bush meat’. It is from sustainable sources. The reason game meat was banned in Kenya in 2004 was because meat could not be guaranteed to be from sustainable sources.

  74. John Ottaway
    Posted September 25, 2017 at 5:36 am | Permalink

    In Bosnia in 1993, at the height of the war. There was a hut stand at the side of the road, near the Croatian border, where an old man had an animal on a spit and it smelled amazing as we drove past, so on the way back we stopped and asked for some

    He sliced some off, put it into pita bread, with some salad leaves and chilli sauce. My friend chomped down on it, but I paused as I was struggling to work out what the animal on the spit was. Too big for a rabbit, too small for a sheep or a goat. So I asked what it was and made a few animal noises, pig, sheep etc. The old man laughed and started barking… My friend immediately spat his mouthful out, but I was curious, so took a bite and actually finished it off.

    It was a bit tough, but tasted ok and it was the nearest thing to fresh food I had eaten in about 4 months

    I don’t know what breed it was, it looked spaniel sized on the spit. I’ve always wondered if I would have tried it, if he had meowed

    • Posted September 25, 2017 at 6:16 am | Permalink

      You were barking…

      • John Ottaway
        Posted September 25, 2017 at 9:43 am | Permalink

        I did feel a little ruff…

  75. Posted September 25, 2017 at 6:34 am | Permalink

    Possibly a dead puffin I found on the beach at Cromer. Breast meat the size of the ball of your thumb, & that was it. I could have picked up an exotic disease such as bird flu or a parasite…

  76. dabertini
    Posted September 25, 2017 at 7:15 am | Permalink

    I have a friend who eats peanut butter and onion sandwiches. I prefer peanut butter and jam sandwiches.

    • wmelchior
      Posted September 25, 2017 at 9:52 am | Permalink

      Peanut butter, liverwurst, and onion. Yummm. It sounds odd, but if you like both PB and liverwurst it’s a winning combination.

      • Merilee
        Posted September 25, 2017 at 10:16 am | Permalink

        Whoah – might have to try the pb and liverwurst!

    • Merilee
      Posted September 25, 2017 at 10:15 am | Permalink

      I’ve never tried pb with onion, but it actually sounds delicious. Not dissimilar from satay sauce. I ODed on pb and jelly sandwiches as a kid. Peanut butter and bacon is scrumptious.

      • Diana MacPherson
        Posted September 25, 2017 at 11:40 am | Permalink

        A colleague got peanut butter on a hamburger when we were in Vegas. Of course, I ridiculed it, but it was probably pretty good.

      • Posted September 25, 2017 at 1:21 pm | Permalink

        I used to (30+ years ago, as a kid) love peanut butter and pickle (i.e., European pickled cucumber …)

  77. Posted September 25, 2017 at 7:22 am | Permalink

    Well, not sure what I actually ate in some parts of Asia. We just took to calling it “mystery meat”.

    But for sure:

    Deer heart (simply sauteed in a pan — some of the best meat Ive ever eaten in fact.)

    Recently killed mosquitoes, raw, in my 20s. It was an act of symmetric retribution — sort of.

    Various game beasts in Africa, not sure of them all.

    I did note once that paper wasps smelled exactly like shrimp as they cooked on top of the wood stove. Not so surprising since they are all arthropods.

    Oh, and kidneys (sheep kidneys). As in steak and kidney pie (in the UK of course). I was the only one in our party with the intestinal fortitude to cut them up for cooking and then later eat them (including the person making the S&K pie!). Anyway, once was enough for me. They tasted — well, like the smell of urine!

    • Posted September 25, 2017 at 7:26 am | Permalink

      OK, also Gamalost and Pultost in Norway and Sweden. I actually quite like them; but then I am a serious cheese head.

    • Posted September 25, 2017 at 7:29 am | Permalink

      And I have eaten squirrel, on many occasion, shot, dressed, and cooked by myself, when I was young and silly.

      I’d give it a pass now.

    • Posted September 25, 2017 at 7:58 am | Permalink

      If they smelt like that, they weren’t properly prepared. I love kidneys, in steak pies or devilled.

      /@

      • Posted September 25, 2017 at 8:44 am | Permalink

        I sort of figured that — but you never know, right? A “national” dish can taste pretty weird to people not accustomed to it.

        I did not prepare the S&K pie; but my cousin did, so I didn’t inquire as to why it tasted so, erm, uh, pissy.

        Glad to hear it isn’t always that way. I’ll make a point of giving it another go next time I’m in the UK (if I can tear myself away from the fish and chips and the Indian food!)

        • Merilee
          Posted September 25, 2017 at 10:27 am | Permalink

          I seem to remember that, strangely, if you cook the kidneys in vinegar they taste less”pissy”. Not my favorite dish, but at least edible this way.

  78. Bob Barber
    Posted September 25, 2017 at 8:18 am | Permalink

    Ate monkey at an ARVN colonel’s promotion party in a firebase in Song Be, Vietnam in 1969.

    • Posted September 25, 2017 at 8:47 am | Permalink

      A story or three definitely hangs there!

      I am in the middle of watching Burns’ and Novick’s The Vietnam War. Wonderful but harrowing. What you fellows (and the ARVN, NVA, VC, Viet Minh and civilians) went through!

  79. harrync
    Posted September 25, 2017 at 1:12 pm | Permalink

    Brackenridge Park in San Antonio used to have a snake pit [I’m talking 1940’s – 1950’s]. They would butcher a rattle snake and fry it up. I hate to say this, but IIRC, it tasted like chicken.

  80. Posted September 25, 2017 at 1:28 pm | Permalink

    It is amazing to me how many of the items people mention are *animals*. Where are the weird plants or fungi? No cactus or some weird leafy thing found in some tropical island that is delicious but looks like
    crap? 😉

    Surely some “gastromycologist” has some heart rending tail of how they had the X which was almost Y? 🙂 And a large number of the other items were exotic animal *products* (honeys and cheeses), too. Interesting.

    As for the oddest thing I’ve had – it has already been mentioned, alas, but: sea urchin aka uni from the neighbourhood Japanese restaurant in my area of Vancouver when I lived there. My sister (visiting at the time) wanted to try it, since one doesn’t get that much in our native Montreal. I found it really pointless – bland and watery, like really thin custard. She didn’t like it.

    Oddest thing I *know* people eat are the raw pork dishes they have in Laos (and Germany – from the above – ?). Human brain is another. Fugu also comes to mind. Or durian.

  81. Old_ones
    Posted September 25, 2017 at 8:50 pm | Permalink

    Hakarl – rotten greenland shark. Its an icelandic specialty. The shark meat contains toxic amounts of urea so they allow it to ferment for about 6 months (traditionally buried in a box). This makes the meat edible. It tastes like ammonia.


%d bloggers like this: