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5 Weird Foods Around the World

by Kristen Sarah

For most travellers, food ends up being a big part of the globetrotting experience. After all, food is an important aspect of every culture, not only because it fuels our bodies, but because it is a way to express creativity, relate to one another and share a special moment in time.

However, when it comes to food and travel, it is also not uncommon to come mouth-to-fork with something you would have never considered possible for human consumption. But you are a traveller, and one who will step out of your comfort zone and full-heartedly dive into the unknown, right? So, even if a fried scorpion is presented on a plate in front of you with its stinger pointed at your face, your first instinct may be to say, “There is no way I am putting that in my mouth, ” while the curious explorer inside of you may say, “Maybe it won’t be that bad.” The second is the mentality that I try to cultivate when I travel and it has led me to eat some pretty interesting things around the world. Here are five of the strangest:

Bee Larvae
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Shutterstock

Bee larvae are a favourite among the Javanese. The traditional East Javanese dish, known as botok tawon, is made using coconut milk. The texture may be hard to get used to, but the flavour is nice, I swear.

Scorpion
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Shutterstock

When you think of a scorpion, you think of a venomous and dreaded creature that you don’t want to mess with. However, in Thailand, don’t be surprised to see a cart of these feared arachnids being wheeled down the streets of Koh San Road in Bangkok and sold in bulk like a bag of potato chips. These creatures are said to have medicinal importance despite the fact that they are deep fried in oil and topped with spices.

Turtle Foot
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Shutterstock

During my stay in the Amazon of Peru, I tried various types of food such as piranha, alligator and turtle foot. I would not have been able to tell that I was eating piranha and alligator if I was not told or had speared the piranha myself. However, the turtle foot was very easy to identify since it was presented on my plate standing upright with the leg, nails and all. The meat was rubbery in texture and the taste was bland. I was told that turtle is part of a typical meal in the Amazon, but I prefer to see these guys swimming down the river than on my plate.

Pigeon
cooked_pigeon

Shutterstock

While travelling in Morocco, be sure to try pastilla, also known as pigeon pie. Pastilla is a flaky pastry stuffed with various spices including cinnamon, ginger, turmeric, salt, pepper, cilantro, parsley as well as nuts, sugar, egg, onion, butter and, of course, pigeon. Moroccans love it, and I can understand why. But don’t just take my word for it.

Guinea Pig
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Shutterstock

What is considered a family pet in North America is considered a delicacy in Peru. There are farms that raise guinea pigs like North Americans raise chickens. These little guys are prepared baked or fried and are usually accompanied with rice, vegetables and cassava.

What’s the weirdest thing you’ve eaten in your travels?