One of the weirdest dishes I ever tried was a salad of blue potatoes, baby octopi, and a third, normal thing I understandably don’t recall. This was at some bullshit trendy faux-Mexican restaurant somewhere in the ’90s, somewhere in Manhattan, where I always had to go for business trips.
Blue potatoes, for the record, taste like regular potatoes. Baby octopi taste like fried calamari if they didn’t fry it. I feel bad for them now. They were only babies!
Maybe because of Hannah’s recent posts on edible weeds, I’ve been thinking again about weird foods I’ve eaten, and about how many things I’ve never tried.
Although I’m not from the South, I’ve had fried green tomatoes. My dad made them with tomatoes from our garden before a hard freeze. His were thinner slices in a light batter, like green tomato tempura. I tried deer sausage as a kid, in my uncle’s finished basement at a family New Year’s Eve party. It tasted great, not too different from summer sausage, but I had to stop eating after someone joked about Bambi.
Once in New Orleans I ate almost a whole bucket full of crawfish. On that short trip I was wandering around the French Quarter without any particular place to stay, which I don’t recommend. The docks and the alleys behind the restaurants smelled like rotting crawfish, and so did I by the time I got back on the train to go home.
At a B&B in Cork, my husband and I both loved black pudding, or at least, he loved it until I told him what it was.
Those foods may not be at all unusual to you, depending on where you live. I don’t think I’ve tried too many unusual things, and I’d like to branch out a little, but if you Google “weird food” you bring up lists of disgusting food. Disgusting to me, anyway. I would definitely try fried crickets or grasshoppers–I like anything crunchy–but tuna eyeballs? Or balut, a duck egg in which the duck fetus was half-grown? Not for me.
Some things are just stupid, like live octopi whose suckers may attach to your throat when you try to swallow them. It would serve you right.
I started making a list of some of the foods I’d actually like to try. Here’s what I’ve got so far.
Marzipan. I’m going to like this, right? It’s so cute!
Turkish Delight. I only know it from the Narnia books.
Goat. I avoid factory-farm-raised meat, but I feel like there’s a better chance that a goat’s had an ok life. I’m not positive of that, though.
Frog’s Legs. I’m sure I’ll like these. They fry them, right? There are not many things I don’t like fried. Hell, I’d probably like tuna eyeballs if they were deep-fried.
Huckleberry Pie. I am still not 100% convinced huckleberry is a real berry.
Moon Pie. Not weird at all, but I’ve never had one! And they’re kind of iconic. I may order a box on Amazon.
Horchata. It’s ridiculous that I’ve never tried it. I lived in Tucson for three years and they sold it pre-made in the grocery stores. Every time I shopped, I thought, “I should really try that,” but then I thought, “No, I should make my own,” and I never did.
Marmite. I read somewhere that British people really like this, but I can’t believe it’s that common. Is it?
Kippers. I just figured out they are actually herring.
Chayote. It’s a squash.
Cherimoya. It’s a fruit.
Dragonfruit.I’m not sure if I can find this anywhere near me.
Macarons. I know! Why haven’t I had one yet? Obviously I’ll love it.
Salt Cod Fritters, or Bacalaito. I bet these are amazing.
French Lavender Ice Cream. A shop not too far from me sells it. I’d like to try Green Tea Ice Cream too.
What are some weird things you’ve eaten? And what should I add to my list?