There are a lot of strange things in this old world of ours. Strange customs, strange ideas, but strange food has got to be the worst. Here are my top five:
5. The Dormouse.
The Dormouse is a cute little rodent. There are several speciesof Dormouse, but the Edible or Fat Dormouse is something that the Ancient Roman’s liked to feast on as snacks. Fast food, I guess. This dormouse is the largest of the species being 5 inches long and weighing up to four pounds. They are found through out Europe. While the ancient Romans are, well old news, Slovenians still eat the Edible Dormouse.
4. The FruitBat
I like bats a lot and can not fathom eating them. Yet, the Chamorro people of Guam, will rinse of the bat, boil it and throw it into a broth. Walla, you have fruit bat soup. They don’t skin it, or gut it. nothing, just rinse and boil. The problem is , besides being a bit weird to me, is that these fruits bats eat, well, fruit, seeds and all. One of the favorites of the Fruit bat is a fruit called the Cycad seed, while yummy for the bat they produce neurotoxins for us humans.The Chamorro people have high incidences of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis-Parkinsonian dementia complex (ALS-PDC), aneurological disease similar to Lou Gehrig’s, Parkinson’s, and Alzheimer’s. All from ingesting what the bat ingested. I will stick to chicken soup , thank you.
3. Witchetty Grub
Ok, this one bugs me and makes me squirm a bit. The Witchetty Grub was, and is, an Australian outback tucker(food). Originally the Aborigines would dig up these caterpillars and munch down on them for substance when in the outback, you know ,because the outback doesn’t have a lot of food. The Australians still munch on them today. Did I mention you just eat them alive and being as big as they are (can be up to four inches long), one gets to chew. The worst part? Aussies are serving them in high class restaurants as delicacies. I have several Australian friends and all I can say is, really guys?
2. Casu Marzu
Oh Italy. Why? You make so many good foods to eat must you make this and eat it as well? Casu Marzuis a cheese. I like cheese, but probably am not going to munch on this cheese. It is full of maggots. The official term is Larvae of the Cheese Fly, but if it is a fly, then it’s kids are maggots. The flies are deliberately introduced to the cheese and because of the digestive action of the larvae goes, it goes above and beyond normal fermentation. The texture of the cheese becomes very soft with some liquid (or tearing). Some folks clear out the translucent white maggots and some leave them in. I will stick with good old cheddar cheese, from Wisconsin.
Now delicacies doesn’t get any better than Kiviaq. It is a dish from Greenland that is sure to turn your stomach. This dish is popular at weddings, birthdays and other important gatherings. Here is the recipe: Take 500 dead auks, pack into a seal skin intact, including beaks, feet and feathers. Remove as much air as possible from the seal skin before you sew it up Seal it up with seal fat, which repels flies. Place large rock on top to keep the air content low. Wait 7 months for the birds to ferment, then open up and enjoy. Please remember to use Auk and Eider. In 2013, some folks used eider which does not ferment as well as Auk and got botulism. Please! Be responsible with your Kiviaq!