Strange Foods: Bush Meat, Bats, and Butterflies: An Epicurean Adventure Around the World

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9789625931548: Strange Foods: Bush Meat, Bats, and Butterflies: An Epicurean Adventure Around the World
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In this gastrological romp, Jerry Hopkins, shares tales of gustatory tidbits from six continents. Weaving history and autobiography, Hopkins regales with an array of startling facts about the world's eating habits.Strange Foods begins with rat tales from the Roman Empire and imperial China and continues on to stories form locales where rat remains a mouth-watering hors d'oeuvre or hearty entrée today. There are at least 40 serving suggestions for crocodile alone! And there are more than 250 photographs from acclaimed photographer Michael Freeman, whose aim is true and who eats what he shoots. This is gonzo food writing that's sure to change your mind, if not your palate.

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About the Author:

Jerry Hopkins has published more than 1,000 magazine articles and 26 books, including three international best sellers, No One Here Gets Out Alive, The Lizard King: The Essential Jim Morrison, and Jimi Hendrix Experience. A correspondent and contributing editor to Rolling Stone magazine for nearly twenty years, Hopkins now resides in Bangkok, where he has developed a strong reputation as a travel writer, and writes regularly for publications such as The New York Times and Conde Nast Traveler. Michael Freeman has published 23 books on photography. His work has appeared internationally in such magazines as National Geographic, GQ, and Life.

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Jellyfish

In their natural state, as they go bobbing merrily along, carried by the wind and ocean tides, jellyfish offer an unlikely source of food. Like so many other food sources in this book, in addition to an unseemly appearance, many species have a nasty reputation for painfully intruding on human lives, in this case, stinging swimmers and waders enjoying the sea.

It's no surprise that many people think jellyfish are a strange thing to eat. The beast itself floats to a different drummer. They have been on the earth for more than 650 million years, going back pre-dinosaur and shark (and, some might say, rudely, given all that time, they still haven't developed much talent or personality). It gets its name from its "jelly bag," a sort of skin filled with gelatinous secretion that makes it more than 95% water-human beings, one of the other wettest creatures on earth, measure a little more than seventy percent-and it has no heart, brain, or bones, being held together by muscle fibers. Its stomach is connected directly to its mouth, the only opening in its body.

Jellyfish in its natural form is off-putting, but so are many other delicious foods. Once harvested and the tentacles are removes, and the large flat tops are dried, it looks no more threatening than a large dried mushroom. The most popular species reaches fifteen to twenty inches in diameter and when dried is sold in one pound bags. Preparation requires soaking them for about eight hours, changing the water two or three times. The blubbery flesh is then parboiled quickly and rinsed under cold water, and sliced thinly.

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