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Duck/chicken feet - how to eat?

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I've always been tempted to grab a dish of duck's feet at our usual dim sum place, but haven't a clue about how to eat them. What part of the foot is edible? Do you nibble around the bones, or suck the meat off, or what?

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  1. Anything that's soft is edible. Start by biting off the toes between the joints. Chew off the skin and then spit it out (no way to do this gracefully) and continue with the remaining joints/toes. The best part is that little pad on the foot - equivalent, I think, to the heel of a human hand. it's the fleshiest part of the foot but it isn't meat, it's skin and cartilage (I think). anyway, the feet are delish. I prefer chicken feet to duck feet (ducks have webs between the toes). duck feet are bonier.

    3 Replies
    1. re: susanj

      Yep, no way to be dainty eating chicken feet. But plunge ahead. The taste is the most chicken-y taste imaginable. That's why everybody's grandmother (or least everybody who had a grandmother who was an excellent cook) threw chicken feet into the soup pot.

      1. re: Bob Libkind
        p
        Pat Goldberg

        Why the use of the past tense?

        Grandmother Pat G.

      2. re: susanj

        Why do you spit out the skin? The skin's where the marinade is. I think the whole thing is edible, except for the bones. Oh and the claws. Eugh. There are some places that won't cut the claws. I'd pick at them first, and then start chowing.

      3. Here's an old thread off the Los Angeles board that gives some finer points on how to eat chicken feet.

        Enjoy!

        Link: http://www.chowhound.com/topics/show/...

        3 Replies
        1. re: Macy U.
          m
          Melanie Wong

          I'd add an addendum that once one has eaten the edible parts off the foot, another skill is spewing the mouthful of tiny bones onto the table (or plate). I am often in awe watching old Chinese gentlemen do this at the table, much the same way I'm amazed at vignerons who can hit a spittoon from 10' away. (vbg)

          Link: http://www.chowhound.com/topics/show/...

          1. re: Melanie Wong

            Oh my God! You mean you're not supposed to swallow the bones?

            1. re: Jim H.

              Okay youre scaring me. You swallowed the bones!? My mother always freaked me out by saying that if you swallow any bones, you wont be able to have a poo tomorrow.

        2. Awwww poor chickens! lol j/k... kinda.

          IF you want good Chicken feet soup. Go to certain Jamaican or Vietnamese restaurants.