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Sep 23, 2011 07:39 AM

What is this food item?

We had this at Le Chateaubriand on the evening of September 6. I have now forgotten the name in French and when we asked what it was, the server could only translate it as seafood. You had to peel off the dark "skin" and the inside tasted a bit like clam or abalone although the texture was far more tender than clam or abalone.

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  1. l assume you paid a fortune for these. They are called percebes, or goose barnacles, and are harvested with great danger off rocks in Gallicia. Do not know the name in French, only Spanish.

    2 Replies
    1. re: Delucacheesemonger

      I remember these being highlighted in an episode of "Made in Spain" with Jose Andres. I do not remember which episode, however.

      1. re: Delucacheesemonger

        DCM, thank you! My notes say "pors???" so maybe it is the same name used in French? They were among the 4 amuse bouches served that evening. The entire menu was €55 so I've no idea what the percebes added to the cost.

      2. The French name for them is pouce-pied.

        1 Reply
        1. Percebes! I had them a couple of years ago in Portugal. They are gooseneck barnacles and are about as ugly as a food item can be. They remind me of pterodactyl talons.

          1 Reply
          1. re: lynnlato

            We had a couple of huge plates of them in Portgual. I'm not sure of the cost as my husband's company foot the bill but the restaurant was Solar dos Presuntos in Lisbon.

          2. I've seen/heard them referred to as sea squirts here in the US.

            2 Replies
            1. re: inaplasticcup

              Including percebes in a €55 menu is generous (they are usually hellish expensive) - how many did you get?

              1. re: kerriar

                There were about 4 or some had 3 but one piece had two "branches".

            2. My 12-year old daughter ordered these when we were in Granada, Spain and she proclaimed "baby dinosaur feet!"

              They were about 16 Euros for the plate pictured below. (see next post).

              1 Reply