Many people travel worldwide to try different local gastronomic areas’ customs and rare foods. There are foods throughout the world that can be rare because of their appearance, origin, or other characteristics. However, although they
Many people travel worldwide to try different local gastronomic areas’ customs and rare foods. There are foods throughout the world that can be rare because of their appearance, origin, or other characteristics. However, although they can be shocking and even unpleasant for people of different cultures, these foods are not considered so rare for those belonging to these. In fact, many of them become delicacies and haute cuisine elaborations.
It is no secret that in countries like Cambodia, the tarantula has become a typical dish of the region, or that Beijing has a famous street. In this Wangfujing market, visitors worldwide take the opportunity to try cricket or scorpion skewers. Many gastronomic travelers will have said that “I’m hungry that I would eat anything.” The world is full of succulent, exotic, unimaginable, and curious dishes that should be indulged by the most daring palates! Check out some of the weirdest and rarest food from every corner of the world!
#1. Casu Marzu, Sardinia (Italy)
The first stop on the rare food route cannot be another place than the cheese shops. We start with a casu marzu cheese, whose literal translation means “rotten cheese.” But this shouldn’t scare us, right? In Spain, you can also find cheeses with an almost rotten touch. The small difference is that this cheese is infested with alive fly larvae that give it this texture and flavor that tickles the palate of so many. If you still dare to try it, watch out for your eyes because larvae jump!
#2. Sheep’s Eye Juice (Mongolia)
In Mongolia, the traditional cure for a hangover is a glass full of tomato juice, vinegar, and sheep’s eyes. They are full of vitamins, and those who try it have really opposite opinions: they either love it, or it causes them outright rejection. In any case, less curious food.
#3. Seahorses, Starfish, and Scorpions “Skewers” (China)
That’s one of the dishes that require more courage to be tried. In China, it is ubiquitous to serve food on a stick, including seahorses and stars. Especially be careful with scorpions. Its flavor greatly pleases those who have tasted it.
#4. Dry Lizard (Hong Kong)
The lizards are crispy, crispy, but they don’t have much flavor. In Hong Kong, they are a trendy street snack and are often used in soups as well. Sometimes, and this use is better known, it is applied while still in alcohol, giving rise to liqueurs. They are believed to have medicinal properties such as a cure for colds, which helps you lose weight or regain energy, for example.
#5. Mouse Wine (China)
Also, in China, fermented wine is consumed together with a family of mice. They say it doesn’t smell too bad, and it tastes pretty bad, but the Chinese take it as a tonic to treat liver, skin, and asthma problems.
#6. Cheese with Worms (Europe)
In European countries, we can also try really chilling dishes. This is the case of cheese with worms, typical in Sardinia. For those who like strong-smelling cheese, such as Gorgonzola, Casu Marza is a soft, spoiled sheep’s milk cheese that serves as a home for cheese fly larvae. If we order this dish, the insects are still moving, and they can jump up to 15 centimeters before eating them.
#7. Blowfish (Japan)
As exquisite as it is dangerous. That’s how this fish is usually prepared in Japanese cuisine. Its high content of tetrodotoxin makes it a double-edged sword. That is why fugu, the name given to this food in the country of the rising sun, can only be prepared by some chefs who have a special license from the Government.
#8. Fried/Crispy Tarantulas (Cambodia)
For many, which represents one of the most repulsive and chilling animals globally, others consider it a real gastronomic delight. It is consumed in Cambodia, and it is one of the most incredible local delicacies. According to those who have tasted it, it has a mixture of flavor between chicken and cod. It is consumed with its eight limbs.
#9. Sannakji (Korea)
Sannakji is a variety of small octopuses that are eaten raw, seasoned with sesame and sesame oil. The fun thing about this dish is that, even if it is served chopped, the tentacles will continue to twist in your mouth as you chew them, and their suction cups sticking to your mouth. It’s not Galician octopus, but it might be good, right? If you try it, you better chew it well if you don’t want to suffocate with a tentacle stuck to your throat.
#10. Escamoles, Mexico
Seen from afar, it may look like rice, but the reality is a bit grimier. Since pre-Hispanic times, Escamoles are fried ant larvae served in different stews. Escamoles are highly appreciated in Mexican cuisine and has become one of the most expensive rare foods due to its fame and the difficulty of collecting these larvae, which come from a particularly aggressive type of ant. So, if you want to eat ants, you will have to scratch your pocket.
The rare foods in the world that you will not dare to try when you go on a gastronomic tourism tour are very far from the idea of enjoying delicious meat, a good pasta dish, or a fine glass of wine. But what happens when the local delicacies consist of worms, spiders, or whatever other critters we’re more used to brooming than frying in our skillet? Would you dare to try something like that? The cultural background of each town carries a lot of weight in the meals. What for some can be something disgusting, for others, on the other hand, can be sheer bliss. After all, gastronomy is part of the travel experience, and you have to try everything … or not?