Want to challenge your palate? While every culture in the world has developed their own signature concoctions, what is deemed a delicacy and special, would be entirely bizarre and absurd by outsiders. Here, we’ve compiled seven of the most outrageous and delightful traditional bonne boucheÂ from across the globe, to see if you can stomach them!
1. Fugu (Japan)
Most people donâ€™t consider the possibility of death a reality during their daily meal, but for those eating Fugu, itâ€™s something that must be considered. Fugu is a Japanese pufferfish that contains enough poison to kill 30 people. The chefs who prepare this expensive Japanese delicacy must undergo years of training. Served in a stew, grilled or as paper-thin sashimi, any small mistake in preparation could mean an untimely end to the consumer. Those wishing to try this deadly delicacy should visit Japan during October to March when fugu is in season.
2.Â Fried Spider Â (Cambodia)
Available throughout Cambodia, but a specialty in the town of Skuon, these creepy crawlies have been deep fried in garlic oil until crunchy on the outside and gooey on the inside. Typically of the tarantula variety, the practice of eating these spiders may have started during the brutal reign of the Khmer Rouge when villagers had to find alternative sources of food. Spiders are often sold to travellers passing through town and looking for a quick snack. Besides being full of protein, rumour has it that creepy crawlies also enhances the beauty of its consumer!
Eggs are a common food throughout the world but in the Philippines, they take it one step further by taking a developing duck embryo and then boiling it alive while still in the shell. Typically eaten with a little seasoning of chili, garlic and vinegar, all the contents of the egg are consumed including the visible wings and beak. A common street food, itâ€™s often chased down with a cold beer â€“ just crack, slurp and bite.
4.Â Haggis (Scotland)
Considered Scotlandâ€™s national dish, this mixture includes sheepâ€™s heart, liver and lungs, onion, oatmeal, spices, and stock. Traditionally stuffed into a sheepâ€™s stomach and simmered, this hearty dish dates back to the 1400â€™s and today is served as the main course of a Burns supper on Robert Burns Day. Typically eaten with tatties and neeps (mashed potatoes and turnips), it is often served with a dram of Scotch whisky to get it all down. Today, Haggis is conveniently available ready-made from the grocery store and is a great source of iron and fibre.
5.Â Sannakji (South Korea)
A South Korean delicacy, this dish of live octopus is eaten either whole or in pieces depending on the size of the specimen. Served raw and usually only with a splash of sesame oil, itâ€™s so fresh that the tentacles are still squirming. Suckers from the octopus can attach themselves inside the throat of the consumer causing choking or even death, which makes eating this mollusk a scary proposition. Although the actual octopus is mildly flavoured, the live animal wrapping itself around the diners face as they try to swallow it down is surely an experience to remember.
6.Â Casu Marzu (Italy)
Creamy and soft, this sheepâ€™s milk cheese sounds appealing at first but the fact that it contains thousands of live maggots is sure to put off all but the most adventurous eaters. This Sardinian cheese is made by allowing flies to lay eggs on the surface of Pecorino cheese that has had the top cut off to allow for easy access. When the eggs hatch, the larvae eat through the cheese breaking down the fats and softening the usually hard middle. Strong and rich, the aftertaste of this pungent cheese lasts for hours.
7.Â Hakarl (Iceland)
Rotten shark may sound disgusting, but if the Greenland shark were eaten in its fresh form it would be poisonous. By allowing the shark to ferment and decay the fish becomes edible â€“ if the eater can get past the ammonia smell and rancid fishy taste. Most first-time diners would automatically vomit, and itâ€™s recommended that the fish be chased with a shot of local spirit. Icelanders are able to eat their Hakarl year round, and the rotten fish is stocked, vacuum packed, in regular supermarkets.MYNEWSHUB