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Rally for Hounds who will eat ANYthing.

So many threads about "This food grosses me out".

Calling to hounders who will eat dang well anything.

Might be interesting to describe those occasions that took you close to the edge of food tolerance.

Let's expand the definition of Omnivores.

For me, it was in Japan, presented with baby Octopi, where first slurp was a chopstick piercing of bulbous cephalum, followed by sucking of brains. That one almost got me.

Chime in, just to say that you will eat anything, or maybe some edgy stories.

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    1. re: ipsedixit

      Just googled balut and this was the description I found:

      "Behold, for our journey of horror reaches its destination. Balut are duck eggs that have been incubated until the fetus is all feathery and beaky, and then boiled alive. The bones give the eggs a uniquely crunchy texture.

      They are enjoyed in Cambodia, Philippines and the fifth and seventh levels of hell. They are typically sold by street vendors at night, out of buckets of warm sand. You can spot the vendors because of their glowing red eyes, and the faint, otherworldly sound of children screaming."

      1. re: mem53

        wow. i was challenged to eat balut one time, did it and won a nice dinner out. really never thought to find out what i actually ate. i was just thinking, extra protein?

        only baby goat for me. no amount of caipirinhas could wash down the gamey taste of this meat while in argetina. and cornish hen. manager's special, and clearly rotten.


    2. Street vendor sea urchin in Beijing. It gets fried in recycled oil on a scrapwood-heated griddle, then they cleaver it in half and you scoop out the guts like a soft boiled egg. It tastes like the ugliest fish in the ocean ate an even uglier fish, took a dump on the bottom of the sea, and now you're putting it in your mouth.

      1. I was lucky enough to grow up in a multicultural Asian home. Balut was an afternoon snack. Lamb brains were a favorite curried with eggs and parathas. Dinuguan with tripe is still one of my favorite meals. But just because I've eaten crickets doesn't mean I care for them. Certainly not when their wings get stuck in my teeth.

        1. I had to google the Balut and Dinuguan, impressive and gross all at the same time!!!

          1. I used to think I was one of those people who will eat ANYTHING until Bourdain ate poop chute in Namibia and he and Zimmern both ate rotted shark in some Nordic country. Suffice it to say I was duly humbled.

            But balut, blood pudding, all kinds of offal, live octopi, that kind of stuff - all good.

            7 Replies
            1. re: inaplasticcup

              Isn't "poop chute" pretty much the wrapping for soondae? I've eaten most of an animal's digestive track with no ill effects save the one time I dined on red cooked goose intestines. Poorly cleaned goose intestines. Nothing prepares you for the taste of dark soy sauce, rock sugar and goose s**t.

              1. re: JungMann

                LOL. I mean poop chute with some poop traces left in it a la Bourdain in Namibia. Soondae I can eat no problem. :P

                1. re: JungMann

                  You should watch that episode of No Reservations if you haven't - it was some pretty gnarly stuff. And Bourdain's narration of the tale was hilariously epic as usual.

                  1. re: JungMann

                    I just re-read this and realized you ate goose poop chute with goose poop still left in it. EWWWWWWW...

                    But not as EWWWWW as, like, gazelle or wildebeest poop or whoever's poop Bourdain inadvertently ate that day.


                    1. re: inaplasticcup

                      I don't de-vein shrimp.
                      They are invertebrate filter feeders.
                      Meaning: their poopchute
                      is totally innocuous.

                      Let those fervent de-veiners
                      pound me with their disclaimers.

                      I'll munch my crustaceans
                      as damn well I please.

                      1. re: inaplasticcup

                        I don't think there was anything inside the intestine; it just tasted very "fragrant," shall we say.

                        1. re: JungMann

                          LOL. I'm truly relieved for you, JM. :)

                  2. In January in Tokyo I dined on raw pork meat, heart, liver, and small intestine, mixed up with raw egg and grated ginger. Washed it down with cold bottles of beer.

                    8 Replies
                    1. re: Silverjay

                      Oh, I do love me some superfresh raw beef liver with sesame oil, salt and pepper - Korean style. :)

                      1. re: inaplasticcup

                        Yeah, I prefer raw beef liver, meat, and other parts to raw pork. Although, I generally prefer cooked pork dishes over cooked beef dishes.

                        I guess I could mention I've eaten whale pretty much every way it can be prepared... And oh, another interesting one- fermented blowfish ovaries, washed down with chilled sake.

                      2. re: Silverjay

                        Did they call that the Triple Treyf Special?

                        1. re: Tripeler

                          Ha. Yeah, that was treyf to the extreme! Here is the place, in Shibuya- http://r.tabelog.com/tokyo/A1303/A130... . For awesome beef motsu sashimi, my friend once took me out to this dive in like Kasai I think. Took me 3 hrs. to get back home. What schlep.

                          1. re: Silverjay

                            Wow, I can't really handle stuff like that. How did you feel the next day?

                            1. re: Tripeler

                              Invigorated...well not really. Actually I don't like cooked liver at all, but the raw beef liver I ate, which we were told came from Matsuzaka quality animals, was superb. The raw pork in Shibuya was alright. I was interested in that place because of the homestyle serving- as opposed to dainty pork sashimi.

                              1. re: Silverjay

                                To Tripeler and Silverjay:

                                You guys have spent much time in the Tokyo trenches.
                                Any war stories of culinary episodes
                                with businessmen on expense accounts
                                playing the game of "Gross out the Gaijin"?

                                1. re: FoodFuser

                                  For me, never. For one, I am hardly ever in places frequented by expense-account people.

                      3. In Hong Kong a very much celebrated classical stewed soup consists of grounded Chinese almonds (into liquid milky form), cooked with bok choy and pork lungs (hopefully rinsed 10 times to cleanse of all blood). The lung pieces look like a hideous mix of tofu with swiss cheese, but after dipping it in soy sauce, tastes quite good.

                        1. This might not be popular with many people (at all), but my contribution to this post - dumpster dived food. With the proper knowledge and common sense, regarding what to take / not take / eat cooked / broiled / raw / etc, I've eaten just about every single food group in some way or another that had first graced the inside of dumpster. (These supermarkets are surprisingly sanitary in their disposal methods!)

                          2 Replies
                          1. re: Chipp

                            LOL. I just read an article on people like you. You're called freegans. :P

                            1. re: Chipp

                              One of the recyclers on the Junk Raiders TV show regularly eats dumpster dived food. When they showed their loft space build largely with recycled materials to the owner, they first showed the recycler dumpster diving, then showed the buffet table. Later they revealed that he took all the good (recycled) food home for him and his "old lady." Those crazy Canadians!

                            2. I was pretty impressed by piures in Chile—sea squirts, which are said to eat their own brains (sorta true).

                              Pretty much anything that's available to me, I'll try—again and again. I don't like disliking things, so even if I have a hard time with something initially (and I can count those on one hand), I'll keep at it. Most livers with the exception of foie come to mind; when they're not in pâté form, I do get overwhelmed by the iron content. But I haven't given up yet!

                              I tell myself I would try casu marzu but I've yet to have the opportunity to prove it.

                              1 Reply
                              1. re: tatamagouche

                                I like sea squirts! Koreans eat them raw with vinegared gochoojahng. YUMS.

                              2. I'll eat most anything in it's own raw (if safe) form, especially seafood. I've also even been known to enjoy some deep fried bugs. But I have an issue with certain textures. Creamy innards just don't work for me. And no dog.
                                So if it's not canine or creamy, bring it on!

                                1. Bless you ol' pudgy Pillsbury boy, which I won't eat!
                                  If it's natural, I eat it; from whale in Norway to Iguana and Cuy in Bolivia to sea squirts and live octopus in Korea. Cut and ate me own Rocky Mountain Oysters. Hunt and fish; gut and skin. Raw shellfish, fish, and beef.
                                  I wonder about the positive correlation between food whiners and frequency of chain eating. Just a guess. I'll skip a meal before eating a chain.
                                  I wanted to start a thread like this, but was afraid to put my head in the noose.
                                  Remember! Vote Tom Alley, the Green Stuff Party.
                                  Sea squirts & eel sashimi:

                                  4 Replies
                                  1. re: Passadumkeg

                                    Ah, yes, I like cuy too. I'm fine with RM oysters but so far I've only eaten them heavily breaded and fried, so it's kinda hard to tell.

                                    1. re: Passadumkeg

                                      Gae Bul and Hae Sam...nice. I recently tried gae bul for the first time, and I was blown away by its sweet taste. Yum.

                                      1. re: joonjoon

                                        Yes, but when you look at it in all it's writhing glory you can't help feeling that it might multiply exponentially in size once in your digestive system and then pop out your chest, like in that Ridley Scott movie. :)

                                      2. re: Passadumkeg

                                        Dough Boy is sufficiently leavened
                                        to ask these hard questions.

                                        With a poke to the belly
                                        He not only gives giggles

                                        But also inquires
                                        to our limits of ingestion.

                                      3. Kudos to you adventurous Hounds because I can't see myself eating the things you mentioned!!
                                        I will gladly admit that my tolerence for certains foods are extremely limited! Maybe one day I will have the guts, but for now, have at it Chowsers!

                                        1. Well I don't feel so adventurous after reading all of these posts, but I'll try anything once. The most exotic I've gotten is brain tacos from a great stand in Mexico. Not a fan of the texture, but the flavor was great.

                                          1. many of them get an attagirl/attaboy from me, but there are things I will not eat, and some things I don't want to hear you bragging about, either.

                                            Some of them are geeks, plain and simple, and I don't want to know about their obsession. I know there's some radical eating out there, but I spent to many years in operating rooms and morgues to want to have anything to do with eating a lot of those things. Pets too.

                                            1. I ate a "lasagna" my sister made using no-fat cottage cheese, tofu mozzarella, canned spaghetti sauce, won ton skins and asiago chesse. Talk about going to the edge.

                                              2 Replies
                                                1. re: escondido123

                                                  At least escondido's sister didn't use AMERICAN CHEESE in that dreadful "lasagna"!

                                                2. I will try to eat anything. I really enjoy the process of learning to enjoy new, strange flavors and textures.

                                                  Most recently I made a sausage with the following: Pig blood, kidneys, lungs, liver, beef cheek, beef fat, and pork. All of my friends tried it too, and once they got over the weirdness everyone enjoyed it!

                                                  My friend has been trying to age his own meat at home. Most recently he became too busy to take care of the meat and it ended up "aging" in the fridge for over 70 days. The smell of this thing was horrific. Imagine the worst cheese you've ever smelled died and rotted. It was horrifying. I managed to put it in my mouth and chew it a few times - with each chew my senses were just engulfed with horrifying decay. As hard as I tried, I physically could not get myself to swallow the meat. After chewing on it for a couple minutes I eventually conceded defeat and spat it out. My friend somehow actually ate some of it and acted like he was enjoying it. Ugh.

                                                  1 Reply
                                                  1. re: joonjoon

                                                    LOL. This would be a better post with photos. :)

                                                  2. To qualify; I will eat just about anything, but choose not to eat at chain restaurants. One has to have standards, you know.
                                                    In Vietnam, I was busted or demoted in rank, for eating pho from a hastily deserted NVA encampment. The sergeant said, it might be poisoned. I replied I rather die quickly than slowly from c-ration poisoning. No sense of humor.

                                                    6 Replies
                                                    1. re: Passadumkeg

                                                      The Sarge should have knowed
                                                      they'd never fuck with the pho.

                                                      The cause for demotion
                                                      could have been his suppressed emotion
                                                      From the time that he saw you pull your weapon
                                                      and blast the hell out of that can of Spam.

                                                      You stir up powerful questions
                                                      about the relationships
                                                      of C-Rats, MRE's, and chain restaurant food.
                                                      Yes, Standards.

                                                      But since I've declared that I'll eat damn well anything
                                                      it allows me to succumb to a Big Mac Attack.

                                                      And just recently I swallowed my pride
                                                      and took an 80 year old neighbor to breakfast
                                                      at her favored venue: Denny's.

                                                      1. re: FoodFuser

                                                        FF, a Bronze Star for for you for valor in the face of Denny's. We had a free Breakfast there and felt rooked.

                                                        1. re: Passadumkeg

                                                          Understandable mutual lapses on the Denny's.
                                                          But there remains icon of road food McD's.

                                                          Can you raise your right hand with three firmly clasped fingers
                                                          in the Boy Scout salute....
                                                          and tell us last time
                                                          you pulled in to the Arches?

                                                          1. re: FoodFuser

                                                            It's been so long, I honestly can't remember. On my honor to do my best to obey the scout law. I am trustworthy, loyal, helpful, courteous...
                                                            I do hold food to be holy.

                                                            1. re: FoodFuser

                                                              8 years, 7 months, 4 days for McD absence. Stinky tofu ( which may have human urine used in 'curing' ), andouilette ( major poop chute ) korean live octopus, tripe in any form, cuy. Cannot do natto, tried three times.

                                                              1. re: Delucacheesemonger

                                                                Except for the occasional Coke or bottle of water on road trips so I didn't feel guilty about using the bathroom, 20 years.

                                                      2. Speaking of Japan, people love to slurp up nama tamago kake gohan. Simple: raw egg in white rice. Sometimes it is mixed with natto, the stickiest, slimiest, stinkiest food of fermented soy beans. I avoid both of these foods at all costs, and run for cover when they are combined.

                                                        2 Replies
                                                        1. re: deepgreenC

                                                          Actually, the hot rice does cook the raw egg to some degree. And, modern natto is really not that stinky. Had both for breakfast this morning, and lived to eat lunch.

                                                          1. re: deepgreenC

                                                            My mom used to make me a how bowl of rice topped with cheese, butter, soy sauce, and a raw egg. It's delicious!

                                                          2. Thank you escondido123 for the belly laugh!

                                                            1. I'm sure there are P L E N T Y of things I won't eat but in my rather limited experience it is chicharones in chili sauce. They say while visiting other cultures not to insult them by refusal to eat what they present, but, I tried and failed ashamedly. I still get the willies thinking about it.

                                                              5 Replies
                                                                1. re: joonjoon

                                                                  I like them crunchy but it's the texture when soaked in a liquid that is disgusting. Please don't ask me to eat them that way. Can't get past it--sorry.

                                                                  1. re: Dalton

                                                                    That reminds me of the pickled pork rinds on Steve, Don't Eat It! (Vol. 2)


                                                                    1. re: tatamagouche

                                                                      I wish Steve kept going...that was some epic food blogging.

                                                                      1. re: tatamagouche

                                                                        Thank you for that reference--disturbing yet hilarious, I'll enjoy reading the rest of that guy's adventure. He's a brave soul. In my case the substance was partially disguised with sauce. On addressing this blasphemy to the dinner table the "food" can only be properly dealt with by politely swallowing and then getting up.

                                                                2. I went with some friends and relatives to a snake restaurant in Guangzhou, China. We selected a five foot long snake, for dinner. Out of curiosity, while the rest of the group walked upstairs to the dining room, I watched them kill the snake, drain the blood and remove the gall bladder. Although decapitated, it was still writhing when they took it into the kitchen.

                                                                  They made four or five dishes from that snake, including the best soup I've ever had. As the visiting guests, we were offered the snake blood and bile. The snake blood had congealed, so we couldn't drink it. But I did drink the bile--exceptionally nasty stuff.

                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                  1. I guess compared to some of you.... nothing all that edgy. I will try almost anything at least once.

                                                                    I grew up eating calf's sweetbreads & brains (both pan-fried and delish), I don't mind eating raw meat at all -- raw pork with onions is a highly popular topping for crusty bread in the fatherland.

                                                                    I draw a line at pets, improperly cleaned poopchutes, and live animals. That's just wrong.

                                                                    5 Replies
                                                                    1. re: linguafood

                                                                      I ate some sushi once. Won't do it again. I don't get the thrill in daring myself to eat "food" which, on it's face, seems repellant, though I'll watch someone else do it, like Andrew what's-his- name. Iron will over my gag reflex in the dentist chair is supremely thrashed by its highly tuned counterpart on food texture. I can handle taste, it's always the texture that does me in.

                                                                      1. re: linguafood

                                                                        One persons pet is another person's food. Dog, guinnea pig, iguana, lamb, etc. All perception, not "just wrong".

                                                                          1. re: Passadumkeg

                                                                            Passa, check out the smoked salmon vodka thread on General Chowhound Topics. I's right up your alley, and I shot you a pass. (Or, I passed you a shot)

                                                                      2. I love a lot of things that others don't such as tripe and other organ meats but for some reason I CAN'T STAND BEETS.

                                                                        4 Replies
                                                                          1. re: Veggo

                                                                            Yes the beet goes on.

                                                                            There is nothing like growing
                                                                            then roasting or steaming the Red Root.

                                                                            That may be why they named it Beta vulgaris.

                                                                            1. re: FoodFuser

                                                                              I've heard that beets roasted in a salad can be nice. If I find that to be true then maybe I will eat just about anything.

                                                                              1. re: aclarson76

                                                                                I was a confirmed beet hater until last year when I bought some golden beets at the Farmers' Market, then peeled, sliced and fried them like potatoes. Sprinkle with a little salt and they're not half bad--though they still have a bit of that "dirt" taste that I just don't like. But at least I can now say I eat beets and don't turn away if they are served to me.

                                                                        1. I don't think it was necessarily harsh but why single out the filipinos? Chicken feet are consumed all over the world and Balut is prevalent throughout SE Asia.

                                                                          1. Beautiful dark seductive blood sausage - be it French, Irish or Cajun - lovely stuff.
                                                                            Recently was invited to a country dinner of pork liver hash - a stew that included the melts & lights - great taste but I will try to introduce the generous folks to the concept of grinding the offal & making dumplings - German style. Texturally unsatisfactory is my summary for the stewed but crumbly dry pork liver & slippery soft lights & melts that grinding would make ever so much better.

                                                                            Ha! Know exactly the texture of those baby octopi - we grilled them ONCE - the tentacles were tender & delish but the heads popped like soft grapes, soft grilled grapes - texturally un-yum (had a guest who about croaked hers back up). Sticking with the bigger ones here from now on & only grilling squid.

                                                                            Have gone the pork brains & eggs route once - very secure in the plan to avoid most nervous system large tissue here from now on (most means whatever comes with the oxtail gets chowed & the chicken spinal tissue gets slurped up when the necks are cooked with rice - sorry cat).

                                                                            1. horse sashimi
                                                                              frog intestine stir fry
                                                                              and as mentioned in the "other" thread
                                                                              cod and fugu sperm sac
                                                                              giant sea cucumber (a whole one)
                                                                              and similar to the baby octopus, baby squids

                                                                              Sea cucumber was the only one I would try to avoid-talk about unpleasant texture-a few bites in a stir fry or cold i could do, but never again!

                                                                              2 Replies
                                                                              1. re: AdamD

                                                                                Had whale sushi, and way too many sperm sacs in Japan.