Everybody loves food! Everybody loves to eat! Can you believe it? 7 continents, nearly 200 countries and over 7 billion people around the world and there’s not a single one who doesn’t fall in love with the smell of a good dish. Since we, humans, are creatures of habit, we like to eat our traditional food. However, many also love to eat pizza, hot-dogs, different kind of burgers and other sorts of fast-food. In other words, foods that should not satisfy our appetites and our hunger. But we are also curious by nature, so we do desire to try out something new. Something our taste buds have never tasted.
Being as curious as we are, we are eager to learn about the beauty of cities and countries around the world, to dig into their culture, to steal a word from their (for us a new and very interesting) language. And certainly, most of us never leave a new country without tasting some traditional or exotic food, depending on what country we visited. For example, caviar is symbolic for France. Squids are widely recognizable in Spain. Camel meat is most eaten in Middle-East and also in some other countries in Africa. So many different countries, so many different dishes!
Incredible Exotic Foods To Try
While the world is full of delicious dishes, our desire for trying something new and discover new recipes has led us to taste different kinds of exotic food dishes. After trying few, I realized that all that glitters is not gold. But don’t worry, I’ve complied a list of only the top exotic food from around the world, so if you ever visit any of these countries, you’ll know exactly what to order.
Casu Marzu is a traditional cheese in Sardinia and it can also be found in the vicinity of Corsica. However, it is not a common type of cheese as you might think. This type of cheese is rich with larvae of live insects -maggots, which is where it’s common name comes – rotten/putrid cheese.
To prepare this cheese, you need to leave the cheese outside open and uncovered and allow cheese flies to lay eggs in it. When the eggs hatch, larvae begin to eat the cheese. The acid contained in the maggots make the cheese very soft. Before eating the cheese, some people kill the maggots with refrigeration or by sealing a portion of the cheese in a paper bag. Casu marzu is a perfect addition to a glass of a strong red wine.
Balut is Filipino street food. It is a duck meat dish, but not the common one that you think. This food is made by hard-boiling fertilized and incubated duck egg. In other words, it is essentially a fertilized duck egg, which contains a grown duck embryo. This dish has become very popular food in Southeast Asia, which locals say that cocked embryo needs to be eaten straight from the shell. Balut is not expensive and it’s usually consumed with beer.
In Vietnam, the Balut is cooked when the embryo is 19-21 days old. Then it looks like a baby duck with firm bones and it is often prepared with salt, vinegar, and garlic. Whether you think it’s exotic or disgusting, people from around the world say it’s one of the best exotic foods they’ve ever tried.
Birds Nest Soup
Next dish on the list of incredible exotic foods to try is the famous “Birds Nest Soup”. This food is also known as “caviar of the east”. It is a rare delicacy in the world, but it is most popular in Asia. In fact, when I say “Birds Nest Soup”, I’m not talking about a nest made of sticks and leaves. These nests are actually made out of dried and hardened bird saliva. The type of the nest mostly depends on the type and on the diet of the bird. It can be made from white to dark brown color.
The Chinese people believe that this dish is good for human health, especially for the skin. These nests have been a part of their culinary for 400 years now, mostly in form of soups.
Fried Tarantulas – Cambodia
Can you believe what you’re seeing in this picture? Yes, it is a spider! It is a poisonous hairy spider that is deep-fried till perfection, known as Tarantula. The most famous one is the Thai Zebra Tarantula with the size of a human hand and it can be found in Cambodia. It can be found everywhere in Cambodia: from street vendors to expensive restaurants.
Seemingly, it is crispy, but only on the outside, because it is very gooey inside. Most people only eat the crispy parts, like the legs and the upper head, but the brave hearted also eat the abdomen, which has the most meat and is believed to be the best part of the spider. There are a lot of recipes about cooking this dish. The spider can be grilled and served with rice and vegetables. You can cook it with soy sauce, salt, garlic and even sugar.
Deadly Fish: License To Cook
One of Japan’s most elite delicacies is also one of the most dangerous dishes you could ever taste – the fugu fish. It is a cute little puffer fish, but grossly lethal. Through the veins of this fish runs a deadly poison called tetrodotoxin. It is a defensive system of the fish and paralyzes her attackers. Till now, there is no type of anti-venom to undo what fugu poison can do. However, in the most luxurious restaurants in Japan, there are well-trained and licensed fugu chefs who have extensive knowledge in this culinary field. They are compliant with the strict rules on the preparation of the fish and know how to cook it at minimized risk. And regardless of the fact that it is a “bit” risky to consume this fish, that is exactly what makes the deadly fish so tempting.
With every tasty dish, there should be a glass of wine. But this time, I will not recommend you an expensive Chardonnay, Riesling or Shiraz. The cherry on the cake is an exotic sort of wine to fit the requirements of the dishes on my list. This exotic beverage goes by the name Vietnamese Snake Wine. A cobra wine! This wine is produced by fermentation of a dead cobra or scorpion in a bottle, filled with rice wine alcohol or grain alcohol. Because of the fact that cobras are on the endangered species list, import of this kind of wine is illegal in most countries in the world. If it’s legal in your country and you want to taste a cobra wine, you can easily find it online at a minimum price of $100.