I've never been to Asia, although it is definitely on my long list of Places to Go. Thailand, India, China, Indonesia, Japan, The Phillipines...how exciting! My concern as A Picky Eater, however, is what I will eat once I get there, particularly since all of the exotic food shows I've watched always highlight unusual foods that have never been introduced to my palate. Besides, my gag reflex is pretty intense. (I know, I know: TMI.) And that's exactly why I won't be the one on my team to do the mystery food challenge if I ever get on The Amazing Race. Nu-uh. Not me. No way.
In any event, here are some unusual exotic Asian foods that I found on MatadorNights.com. Are you game?
Thailand’s deep-fried grasshoppers"Right in the heart of Bangkok’s red-light district, street vendors peddle a huge array of deep-fried bugs – from ants to hornets, caterpillars to grasshoppers. Anything that hops and bites is fair game for the palate. Add some chili powder, and you’re in for a sizzling, jumpy ride." OMG. Are those worms too?!?!?!?
The Filipino Balut
"The boiled half-hatched egg is exceptionally crunchy as you sink your teeth into the partially-formed fetus, complete with feathers, eyeballs ,and translucent skin. The locals like to dip it in vinegar and soya sauce. The down side- you might find feathers stuck between your teeth! Mangababaluts (balut-makers) can be found in the district of Pateros, Manila." I think I just fainted and I can't get up.
Oriental chicken feet
"Sharp and thin chicken feet are a common delicacy in Hong Kong, Singapore, Taiwan, and China. As a popular dimsum (steamed snacks in bamboo baskets), chicken feet are stewed in black bean sauce and steamed for a long time before the soggy skin crumples and the cartilage becomes chewy. Be careful of the chicken’s toenails though: you don’t want to choke on them!" Laughing. Toenails? Ummm. I think not.
Isaw Manok in the Philippines
"Barbecued chicken intestines are a national dish for the Filipinos, who have a soft spot for internal organs. Chicken gizzards, liver, and heart are all grilled on bamboo skewers, garnished with sweet and spicy sauce, and cooked to perfection. Not enough to satisfy your senses? You might just prefer the barbecued chicken head or pig’s ears." Okay. I feel a gag coming on.