21 of the weirdest foods I have NEVER eaten!

Some of the weirdest things I have ever seen around my travels has actually been the food. But what is the absolute worst? Whether I have been walking through Cambodia, Singapore, Japan, or Korea, I have always been surprised at just how revolting some of the local cuisine is! I passed on the opportunity to try the examples listed below – and I’m not sure you even could pay me to eat some of them! How many have you tried?

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BBQ Snake – these things I found in Siem Reap, Cambodia. Street vendors sell them in night markets on Pub Street, mostly fresh and cooked before your very eyes!

singfastfood101

Fish Head Curry – curry in itself isn’t weird, in fact it is eaten all over Asia and is the national dish of India, Sri Lanka, and even Japan. But adding a whole fish head to the bowl? No way!

crabbe

Chili Crab – not exactly “weird” per se, but still one of the most annoying things to try to consume. I now know why they give you a bib to wear when trying to eat it…

crocmeat

Braised Crocodile – is made from the succulent meat of, yep, you guessed it: crocodiles! The meat is apparently surprisingly juicy and often the claws are left on the meat for you to remove yourself.

TARANTULA

Deep Fried Tarantula – found in night markets all over Cambodia, Vietnam and Thailand. Could you eat a tarantula?

Scorpions on Sticks
Scorpions on Sticks

Scorpions on Sticks – (and other bugs as seen here) can be found in the night markets of Beijing, specifically Wangfujing. A popular tourist draw, these bugs on sticks are a cheap meal!

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Paniki – fried bat originating from Sulawesi in Indonesia.

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Sannekji – is the Korean term for an octopus, often the tentacles of this octopus are still wriggling on the plate as you try to stab them with your fork!

chinesesharkfin

Shark Fin Soup – a controversial delicacy across Asia but mainly in southern China, where the locals believe the tasteless soup has medicinal benefits.

Dog is considered a local delicacy by some Koreans
Dog is considered a local delicacy by some Koreans

Dog – yep, Man’s Best Friend! While dog meat is thankfully being sold less and less these days, these poor canines are still eaten voraciously in China, South Korea, Vietnam, and Indonesia.

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Fried Red Tree Ants – part of Khmer cuisine and usually eaten as a pre-meal snack.

durian2

Durian – the King of the Fruits, is also the King of the Smells! The pungent yet delicious fruit is sold all over Asia but is known as Singapore’s national fruit.

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Iron Eggs – are a street food snack from Taiwan. These eggs live up to their name, as the double-cooking makes them as hard as iron. Almost.

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Chicken Feet – sold all over Asia, including in China where they are called Phoenix Claws, but I hear these are a massive delicacy in the Philippines and are found in markets everywhere!

Balut
Balut

Balut – for many reasons this is probably the most disgusting item on this page. I believe it is raw duck embryo still inside its egg having been cooked alive to be eaten in its shell. Makes me sick just looking at it.

chickenbloodcubes2

Chicken Blood Cubes – the blood of poultry is dried on meats or savoury snacks to add more taste!

bearpaw

Bear Paw Whiskey – a distinctive and potentially lethal variety of whiskey in Laos which has an unsurprisingly very bad reputation!

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Hachinoko – bee and wasp larvae from Japan. Very popular, I am told.

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Wasp Crackers – the Japanese also created this delicacy by pouring sticky liquid (I guess similar to honey) down the crevices where wasps’ nests are present. When hardened, the substance is cut into cookie shapes and provide a lovely snack! But Bee Careful!

tunaeyeball2

Tuna Eyeball – simply disgusting, and yet again served to us from those devious Japanese foodies.

Raw Oyster – OK, not the most weird thing in the list, but I had to include it. I HATE OYSTERS. If anything will make me sick, it’s oyster – and how the Hell can people eat them raw?!

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Mongolian Boodog – I am told that the goat is hung by the neck and the head ripped off. Then hot stones and other meat is placed inside the body and the food is cooked within the goat – flames and all! The carcass of the animal effectively acts as the oven! I simply have no words to describe how disgusting this looks (despite Mongol cuisine generally being really quite pleasant)…so check out this site from Mongol Food to read a better description.

Please tell me of your stories if you have been lucky/unlucky enough to try any of these disgusting dishes!

 

 

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19 thoughts on “21 of the weirdest foods I have NEVER eaten!

  1. I have eaten some of those. I refused to eat Balut, and I am glad you mention it. Also, chicken feet. I did eat dog, but I could never eat it the way it is presented in your photo. I have eaten snake as well, and consumed snake wine. But, bears paw whisky? I also refused to eat chicken feet. And, I doubt I could eat the rest on the page. Oyster… I have had it

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    1. I agree with you about Balut. It’s sick how people eat that, but apparently it’s very popular as Filipino street food! What did the dog taste like, btw? I couldn’t imagine eating it myself.

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      1. I had it once, in Shanghai. The after smell was awful, almost like stinky dofu. Then again, in Harbin, where it is popular. But, it was very, very hard to eat the second time. I refused to eat shark fin soup, especially after I learned about how they leave the Sharks to die. Last, I stopped eating hairy crab. Friends brought some home and cooked them at home. They slowly boil them to death. I think that this is very cruel.

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  2. I don’t know about leaving the claws in but crocodile is actually quite nice. Never had it stewed but did try it in outback Australia in a curry and was pleasantly surprised!
    The rest do sound pretty icky, have seen quite a few of these items in our travels so far and can barely look at them let alone consume them!

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  3. I’m quite an adventurous eater and I have tried: fish head curry (yummy), chilli crab (yummy but really messy), crocodile soup (the meat was cut into small pieces, looked and tasted like chicken), shark fin soup (at a Chinese wedding, tasted like asparagus soup?), durian (quite nice but the smell… ugh), chicken feet (yummy), chicken blood cubes (not too bad), bee larvae (eaten with vegetables and spices, couldn’t really taste the larvae), oysters (raw/baked/fried, yum!)… I’ve also tried fried termites (tasted like fried bacon fat), roasted crickets (tasted exactly like prawns, but crunchy)… But i don’t think I can eat dog, snake, paniki, ants, balut… And the bear paw whiskey… Oh no no, that looks so scary…..

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    1. Wow, you have eaten most of the things on my list! I don’t know if that’s good or bad! 😉 Maybe one day I would eat the chicken blood cubes (I had Pig’s Blood Rice Cake in Taipei once), but none of the other things! And I agree with you about the bear paw whiskey…so cruel to the bears.

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  4. I’m here to defend Chili Crab, Durian and Raw Oysters – they are totally worth it! Chicken feet, fish head curry, iron eggs, chicken blood cubes are all OK but nothing special. Likewise for shark fin soup, they’re just OK but sometimes unavoidable if you go to Asian weddings. BBQ snake and tarantula – not for me. Haven’t tried the rest – but leave me out of all the insects.

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    1. Yeah Chili Crab is so popular in Singapore, it’s just so messy! 😀 I agree that insects should be off the menu, but for some reason tourists love them! I bet you saw no such things on your recent visit to Istanbul! The Turks seem a little more civilised 😉

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  5. I am Mongolian who is from Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia. While I have enjoyed your educative post, there are certain things to say. Your description about boodog is inaccurate. First of all unlike many other East Asian nations we don’t eat dog meat. Dog meat is cultural taboo for us just like horse meat to British or Americans. Our traditional staple food is meat and diary and throughout modern human history (period after stone age) livestock has always been outnumbering human population in Mongolia. Even nowadays while we have 3 million people, combined number of 5 domestic animals (1.Horse 2.Camel 3.Cattle/yak 4.Sheep 5.Goat) reach as high as 50 million. That mean Mongolians have rarely experienced protein deficiency and are quite choosy when it comes to meat. Generally speaking meat of any carnivorous animal is considered unclean and inedible. Dog is here viewed as partner and assistant rather than food.

    Secondly only two animals could be used as boodog. 1.Goat. 2.Marmot.

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    1. Thank you for your post Zaluu! I will make edits to the post based on your information. I am yet to visit your beautiful country but when I do I am looking forward to something nicer than boo dog! 😉

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  6. Had dog in Indonesia- didn’t know until after though. Ordered a half rack of ribs, half way through it asked the waiter way they were so small….he said, ‘er, these are fox ribs sir’. Having not seen any foxes but overrun by feral dogs, I deduced he meant dog….and finished my dinner! Not great…but ok, and tbh they have little livestock so didn’t judge. Also various fried insects etc. From Street markets…not bad 🙂 A few things I have also had not on your list are European-I love sea food, but sea snails – not great….and number 1 worst is a French special, live sea urchins….worst ever!

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