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Top 5 Places for Lovers of Exotic Cuisine

Exotic cuisine
Photo taken by Travel On Spot.  Exotic cuisine

Do you like not only interesting journeys, but also unusual, exotic dishes? If so, let the following inspire you. Here we suggest to you five places that offer meals way more exotic than cold borscht.

1. Balut, The Philippines

Video by AldrinVids.  

Balut is a boiled fertilized duck (or chicken) egg with an already-formed embryo. It is common in the Philippines, Cambodia, Laos, Vietnam and China. The food is thought to possess magical healing abilities. Despite religious, economic and diplomatic pressure from the West, Filipinos still eat this national dish.

The eggs are sold in the streets, often it is served with beer, and are eaten every day, being an important part of the Filipino diet. It is especially loved by men, because some think of it as an aphrodisiac that increases virility. The fluid around the embryo, seen in good quality balut, is especially valued. The production of the delicacy in the Philippines is industrialised, and plans are being made to export it to Europe.

2. Rocky Mountain oysters, Montana (USA)

Video by Tasted video.  

Seafood in Montana? Don’t jump to conclusions right away. This dish is known as prairie oysters, cowboy caviar and Montana tendergroins. Rocky Mountain oysters is a deceptive term for bull calf testicles. The bulls are castrated, so they act less aggressively and grow beefier. The testicles are coated in flour, marinated in beer and deep-fried.

Every autumn the state of Montana holds the world’s biggest testicle eating festival, which gathers around fifteen thousand gourmands. A bull calf testicle festival is not a family-friendly event, as admission is strictly 21s and over.

3. Casu marzu, Sardinia (Italy)

Video by Bizarre Foods with Andrew Zimmern.  

Casu marzu is a traditional Sardinian sheep's milk cheese. It is special, because it is served with live insect larvae. It originated from Italian Pecorino cheese, fermented in an unusual way – whole Pecorino cheeses are left outside with part of the rind removed. The cheese fly lays its eggs inside the cheeses. When the eggs hatch, the larvae start eating through the cheese. The acid from the maggots’ digestive tract turns the cheese soft and fluffy. By the time it is ready for consumption, a typical cheese rind will contain thousands of maggots. The Sardinians believe that cheese with dead larvae should not be consumed, and this is why casu marzu is usually eaten with live larvae. When the cheese has fermented enough, it is cut into strips, spread on traditional Sardinian bread and served with strong red wine. Casu marzu is believed to be an aphrodisiac by the locals.

4. Witchetty grub, Australia

Edible Australian Larva
Photo taken by nuotr..  Edible Australian Larva

Australians eat kangaroos, ostriches and crocodiles, but not everyone will dare to try witchetty grubs, a local Aboriginal delicacy. It's white larva from moths and beetles, often found in decaying wood. They grow the size of a finger, and are eaten alive or cooked in hot ashes. Doesn't sound too appetizing, right? Real Australians will beg to differ, as this meal is rather common and liked.

5. Guinea pig, Peru

Video by Christian Romero.  

Did you own a Guinea pig as a pet when you were a child? Cute little thing, huh? Peruvians also adore them, but in a different way. In Peru this small animal is the main carnival treat. Cuy, the most famous meal from Guinea pig, is usually served with potatoes or rice. Those who have tried it claim the taste resembles that of rabbit meat. It is estimated that each year Peruvians eat more than 3 million of the rodent.

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