Monday, May 9, 2011

The Top Five Weirdest Foods that I've Eaten ... to Date

I thought I would take a break from the recipes and reviews to reminisce about the one other aspect of my hobby that is often neglected in this blog ... eating.  As I have always told Clare, I am willing to try something once.  Well, actually, twice.  I'll try something once to see if I like it and I'll have it again to confirm my initial impression.  I got that view of eating from Andrew Zimmern, who made a passing reference to trying everything at least twice in one of his episodes of Bizarre Foods.

So, I got to thinking lately about the really weird things that I've eaten, and, I could come up with five things.  So, here is my rundown of the five weirdest things that I have eaten ... to this date:

(5)  Pig Trotters at Nick's Italian Cafe: During our honeymoon, both Clare and I had dinner at Nick's Italian Cafe in McMinnville, Oregon.  We ordered a special dinner with multiple courses.  My appetizer included Pig Trotters, which, as the name implies, is prepared using pigs' feet.  This dish was very good and, from what I could recall, fairly fatty.  For me, it was more reminscent of pork belly than pigs' feet.

(4)  Lamb Heart at Home: For one of my challenges during the Around the World in 80 Dishes, I made sauteed lamb heart.  I found the lamb heart by accident one day while perusing the meat section at my local Whole Foods.  I bought the heart and prepared it according to a Libyan recipe that used spice mixes such as bzaar and hararat.  This is the only dish in this "countdown" that I made myself.  Although it may sound weird or gross, the fact of the matter is that the heart tasted like lamb.  The texture was a little different.  I expected it to be a little tougher than it was.  All in all, considering this was the first time that I ever cooked with heart, or any offal for that matter, I have to say that it was good. 

(3) Grasshopper Taco at Oyamel: Clare and I met a friend for dinner at Oyamel, one of the restaurants owned by Jose Andres, a famous chef who rose to prominence from the D.C. area.  Oyamel had a lot of interesting tacos, such as pork belly and beef tongue.  But, the one taco I wanted to try was the grasshopper taco.  This taco is based upon a Oaxacan recipe.  The picture is not too good because it was dark in the restaurant.  That was a good thing for both Clare and our friend, both of whom were completely grossed out by the sight fo the taco.  As for the taste and texture, I still cannot really identify the taste of grasshopper, but the texture was definitely just cartilage.

(2) Blowfish Porridge in Fugu Broth at Sushi Taro: This dish was my most recent attempt at eating something weird.  The whole time, all that Clare and I could think about was the Simpson's episode when Homer ate the blowfish.  In actuality, the blowfish had the texture and taste of a flaky white fish.  I got much more in terms of taste from the other ingredients in the porridge, such as the dill, seaweed and egg, than I did from the blowfish.

(1) Veal Sweetbreads at AMP 150: Actually, I've had sweetbreads twice, once fried and once grilled.  I have to say that I liked the grilled sweetbreads much more than the fried (although both were good).  The sweetbreads have a very different texture, which is a little hard to explain.  The taste of the sweetbreads was mild, leaving me to focus more on the texture. 

Well, that is it for this little break in the recipes and reviews.  Hopefully, I have not grossed you out too much.   Until next time ...


1 comment:

Lauren said...

After watching pretty much every episode of Bizarre Foods on the Travel Channel, your experiences are not so scary. :) I've always been intrigued by the grasshopper tacos but never made it there before we moved - although if it feels like cartilage, I think I am no longer interested.

I think the weirdest thing I've ever eaten was raw sea urchin. Not very exciting, nor tasty.

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