Would You Put This In Your Mouth?

Information verified correct on December 5th, 2016

15 of the Weirdest Food From Around the Globe

From frog sashimi to spit-roasted guinea pig, treat your taste buds to some of the world’s most bizarre local delicacies.

The best thing about travelling the world is new experiences. Getting outside you comfort zone. But how far are you really willing to venture? Bungee jumping in New Zealand? Shark Diving in Cape Town? Eating Frog Sashimi in Japan – wait. What?

When you find yourself around the globe, chances are you’ll come across a local delicacy that sounds bizarre, unique or downright disgusting.

With this in mind, we’ve put together a list of 15 of the world’s wackiest travel foods. But be warned: this is not for the faint heart or weak of stomach.

#1. Head Cheese

Head cheese is made from the flesh of a pig’s head, which is then seasoned and cooked with vegetables. Thanks to gelatine in the skull, it congeals into a meaty jelly. Fluffernutters anyone?
head cheese in its packaging

*Picture: Wikicommons Source: Flickr

#2. Frog Sashimi

While the French are famous for their passion for munching on these amphibians, this particular delicacy is native to Japan. Only available in a handful of restaurants, this meal of raw frog flesh is not one for the squeamish. Expert chefs slice and dice the frog in front of your eyes and even serve you it’s still-beating heart. The dish is accompanied with dipping sauces. Don't forget to save the bones – as a second course the chef uses them to make a froggy broth.
frog sashimi in a bowl

Picture: Screenshot from YouTube

#3. Blood Sausage

Perhaps a dish Australians might be familiar with, a blood sausage is filled with cooked blood (often pork) and fillers such as grains and potatoes. It’s particularly popular in Ireland, but we’d be happy with the humble beef sausage at our next BBQ.
blood sausage on a plate

*Picture: Marit & Toomas Hinnosaur Source: Flickr

#4. Cuy

In Australia, guinea pigs are a popular pets. In South American, they're a delicacy. Over there they prefer to spit-roast them over a fire rather then let them run on the wheel. Apparently, guinea pig tastes a lot like chicken ... just like every other weird meat your intrepid friend tried overseas.

cuy and corn in a serving dish

Picture: FVBLT Source: reddit

#5. Bird's nest soup

The next time you’re in China and feeling a bit peckish, why not tuck into a bowl of soup made from bird nests. This dish is made from dried bird saliva. Apparently it has an odd, rubbery texture that is considered quite the treat in China, Hong Kong and the Philippines.

bowl of birds nest soup

*Picture: LWYang Source: Flickr

#6. Baby Mice Wine

Baby Mice Wine is one Chinese ‘health tonic’ we’re happy to pass up. Live baby mice are taken from their mothers and stuffed into a bottle of rice wine. The hapless and hairless little critters are then left to ferment for 12 to 14 months.

baby mice wine

*Picture: Scott Edmunds Source: Flickr

#7. Casu Marzu

This Sardinian dish, also known as rotten cheese, is something you might find in a Tucker Trial on I’m a Celebrity… Get Me Out of Here! All you have to do is take some sheep milk cheese, add living maggots and ferment. The fermentation occurs as a byproduct of the insect larvae consuming the cheese fats ... yum?

Casu Marzu cheese

*Picture: Shardan, Wikicommons Source: Supplied

#8. Fertilised Duck Embryo (Balut)

Take one partially-developed duck or chicken egg, add salt and boil – that’s all you need to do to create this gourmet dish. If how your food looks is not important to you, and you have a hankering for an underdeveloped zygote, this is the dish for you.

fertilised duck embryo in a bowl

*Picture: Alpha Source: Flickr

#9. Eskimo Ice Cream (Akutaq)

Don’t bother trying to sell ice cream to Eskimos because they’ve already got their own. This sweet treat is made from whipped animal fat (reindeer or seal) mixed with berries, sugar and sometimes fish.

eskimo ice cream

*Picture: Matyas Havel, Wikicommons Source: Flickr

#10. Tuna Eyeball

Take a wander through the aisles of a Japanese grocery store and you might see one of these staring back at you. This dish tastes akin to squid and is fairly simple dish to prepare:

  • Step one – Boil
  • Step two – Serve with a medley of tuna fat and muscles
  • Step three – Try not to vomit.

tuna eyeball

*Picture: Ykari.Papa Source: Flickr

#11. Escamole

This unique Mexican delicacy, also known as insect caviar, contains ant larvae from the roots of the agave plant. They might look more like rice, but these ant eggs actually taste like butter.

escamole served on a plate

*Source: Supplied

#12. Fried tarantulas (A-ping)

If you're an arachnophobic or a gamekeeper mourning the loss of an eight-legged friend named Aragog, you might want to skip this one. Fried with salt and garlic, this dish is said to have been discovered by starving Cambodians during the rule of the Khmer Rouge.

asian woman eating a tarantula

*Source: Supplied

#13. Surstromming

Native to Sweden, surstromming contains fermented Baltic herring – in other words – rotten fish. Ever wondered what the worst smelling food in the world is? According to a Japanese study, it’s the smell from an open a can of surstromming.

an open can of surstromming

*Picture: Jonathan Winton Source: Flickr

#14. Rocky Mountain Oysters

Don’t be fooled by the name, these are actually deep-fried bull calf testicles that you can find right across America’s West.

rocky mountain oysters with dipping sauce

 *Picture: Ron Dollete Source: Flickr

#15. Live drunken shrimp

Let's end on a high note ... well, at least a drunken note. Where would you go if you wanted to eat live freshwater shrimp that have been dunked in strong liquor? China, of course.

live drunken shrimp in a serving dish

*Picture: James Creegan Source: Flickr

*Images sourced from http://www.news.com.au/travel/travel-ideas/is-this-the-worlds-weirdest-food/story-fnjpja3r-1227247719894

Richard Laycock

Richard is the senior insurance writer at finder.com.au and is on a mission to make insurance easier to understand.

Was this content helpful to you? No  Yes

Related Posts

Ask a Question

You are about to post a question on finder.com.au

  • Do not enter personal information (eg. surname, phone number, bank details) as your question will be made public
  • finder.com.au is a financial comparison and information service, not a bank or product provider
  • We cannot provide you with personal advice or recommendations
  • Your answer might already be waiting – check previous questions below to see if yours has already been asked

Disclaimer: At finder.com.au we provide factual information and general advice. Before you make any decision about a product read the Product Disclosure Statement and consider your own circumstances to decide whether it is appropriate for you.
Rates and fees mentioned in comments are correct at the time of publication.
By submitting this question you agree to the finder.com.au privacy policy, receive follow up emails related to finder.com.au and to create a user account where further replies to your questions will be sent.

Ask a question
feedback