I don't know who is to blame for my strange attraction to weird food. It might be a case of early expose to Jules Verne, whose heroes would eat whatever strange local food happened to be available wherever they went. Or some other accident of childhood. Either way, I enjoy trying things that other people don't really want to try.
I've decided to document some of these things.
Trippa alla Fiorentina
Trippa alla fiorentina is a traditional Florentine dish, which appears to be fairly popular in, well, Florence.
We eat a lot of tripe soup where I'm from, so I expected this to go very well. I gotta say, after eating our hearty, well-season tripe soup, trippa alla fiorentina is a little bland. I wish I could say I liked it, but I guess it's not quite my cup of tea.
I tried it at Osteria De' Pazzi, a very charming place which I heartily recommend. (I think I ate like half the things on the menu there, those people are amazing).
I ate frogs at a local seafood restaurant. They taste pretty much like chicken, which is to say they're good, but not necessarily my cup of tea (I'm more of a pork kind of person). That being said, I'd definitely eat that stuff again.
Turned out to be less weird than I expected, too. The only odd thing was that their tiny little feet had creepy little toes.
The toes taste just as good as the rest of the legs.
Well, they're exactly what the name says. The ones I ate were seasoned with various Mediterranean herbs.
I'm not sure what to say they tasted like. The herbs were pretty strong. I suppose they taste a little like beef?
This is what the buggers look like:
I was on a fairly restrictive diet when I got a package of these things, so I couldn't test this assertion, but I think they go well with beer.
Want to eat
- Surstromming (top of the list because of course it is)
- Sheep head
- Casu marzu
- Crickets, beetles
Not weird enough for the list
- Utopenci. These are pickled sausages, a popular pub food in the Czech Republic. I don't have the words to describe how amazing these things are. I tried to make them at home, but I don't have the right sausages.
- Acorda Alentejana. This is a bread soup with a seafood base, fairly popular in Portugal. Served toppled with a raw egg because this is Portugal. I loved it. I guess it's weird the same way ribollita is weird, but certainly not in the same league as grasshoppers and putrescent shark.