The Omnivore's 100 Foods to Try...just for fun

>> Wednesday, October 30, 2013




My extended family has had a food challenge going on for a few years now. One of the biggest wins was when my cousin Sue ate durian in Thailand; I'd love to get to the Far East but eating durian there is not one of my dreams. I countered this move by eating a block of gjetost, a Norwegian brown goat cheese, and the funny food challenge is still on.

Here's a bucket list of foods you might want to try if you're into unusual things, or if you want to be sure you've tasted some of the more common Western-culture items.

I've read the average person has eaten 20-30 of these, but you food-lovers will probably score more. Here are the instructions:

1) Copy this list into your blog, journal, or Facebook wall, including these instructions.
2) Bold all the items you've eaten.
3) Cross out any items that you would never consider eating. (I've marked ones I really love in red)
4) Comment on your results in the comments section.

The Hungry Lovers Hundred

  1. Venison ( you can't get away from this in the Midwestern U.S.)
  2. Nettle tea
  3. Huevos rancheros (Joe likes these better than I do)
  4. Steak tartare (Joe's eaten it, not me)
  5. Crocodile (I've had alligator, does it count? Tastes like catfish)
  6. Black pudding (Yes, I love the fried patties.)
  7. Cheese fondue (OMG yes!)
  8. Carp (meh.)
  9. Borscht (Joe had it on a trip to the former USSR in 1989; maybe someday I'll try it)
  10. Baba ghanoush (I've eaten it, Joe has not)
  11. Calamari (The best calamari ever is at Tufano's Vernon Park Tap in Chicago's University Village neighborhood. We have references, if you want to verify this.)
  12. Pho 
  13. PB&J sandwich 
  14. Aloo gobi
  15. Hot dog from a street cart (The Chicago redhot: Vienna Beef hot dogs, steamed poppyseed bun, neon-green relish, yellow mustard, onions, celery salt, dill pickle spear, tomato wedges, hot sport peppers, and NO ketchup. )
  16. Epoisses 
  17. Black truffle (we first tasted these from a vendor in Tuscany who sold us a pound of buffalo mozzarella embedded with thick shavings of truffles. We took this back to our Agritourismo and lunched on it for a week.)
  18. Fruit wine made from something other than grapes (When I grew up in the fruit-growing region of southwestern Michigan, I tasted many varieties of fruit wine. Fruit ferments wonderfully, and hard cider is one of my favorites.)
  19. Steamed pork buns
  20. Pistachio ice cream (heavenly)
  21. Heirloom tomatoes (again, heavenly)
  22. Fresh wild berries (see our Wild Berry/Lavender Jam recipe, and go forage next summer!)
  23. Foie gras (Oh, yes please!)
  24. Rice and beans (such a great combo)
  25. Brawn, or head cheese 
  26. Raw Scotch Bonnet pepper (in St. Lucia, USVI)
  27. Dulce de leche 
  28. Oysters (Joe yes; me, maybe never)
  29. Baklava (have mercy!)
  30. Bagna cauda
  31. Wasabi peas (my favorite snack in college)
  32. Clam chowder in a sourdough bowl (we love clam chowder, but bread bowls are annoying)
  33. Salted lassi 
  34. Sauerkraut (I love sauerkraut, but it doesn't love me)
  35. Root beer float (fabulous)
  36. Cognac with a fat cigar (Cognac is wonderful, and Joe likes good cigars on occasion. My one cigar experience was not pleasant. How do we rate this?)
  37. Clotted cream tea (I had the best clotted cream over scones in Edinburgh. God is good.)
  38. Vodka jelly/Jell-O  (No thanks.)
  39. Gumbo (Joe's is fabulous, but if he insists on a trip to New Orleans, I'm there for him.)
  40. Oxtail (Oxtail soup is ok.)
  41. Curried goat
  42. Whole insects (sweet-salty grasshoppers (tsukudani) and bee larvae (hachi no ko) in Japan)
  43. Phaal
  44. Goat’s milk 
  45. Malt whisky from a bottle worth £60/$120 or more.
  46. Fugu 
  47. Chicken tikka masala
  48. Eel (lovely in sushi)
  49. Krispy Kreme original glazed doughnut (call me, Krispy Kreme? Please?)
  50. Sea urchin (in sushi, with lemon)
  51. Prickly pear (in jam, meh)
  52. Umeboshi 
  53. Abalone 
  54. Paneer
  55. McDonald’s Big Mac Meal (One of my guilty pleasures.)
  56. Spaetzle (yep. Try the Detzner family recipe.)
  57. Dirty gin martini (a passion I share with my daughter's BF)
  58. Beer above 8% ABV (we love the Belgian Delirium Tremens)
  59. Poutine 
  60. Carob chips (YUCK.)
  61. S’mores (meh.)
  62. Sweetbreads
  63. Kaolin 
  64. Currywurst
  65. Durian
  66. Frogs’ legs (My mom served this, oddly enough, when I was young. It's a lot of work for a little meat.)
  67. Beignets, churros, elephant ears or funnel cake (Meh...although Joe is in love with beignets. New Orleans trip is in order.)
  68. Haggis (Better than I thought, when I tried it in Inverness, Scotland.)
  69. Fried plantain (Fabulous but a little greasy. I love the Puerto Rican mofongo and sweet fried platanos maduros.
  70. Chitterlings, or andouillette 
  71. Gazpacho (Tried it as a kid. Really need to try it again as an adult.)
  72. Caviar and blini (I suggest the full caviar service at the Russian Tea Time Restaurant in Chicago's Loop.)
  73. Louche absinthe
  74. Gjetost, or brunost (Pretty good.)
  75. Roadkill
  76. Baijiu
  77. Hostess Fruit Pie (can someone mail me a cherry glazed one?)
  78. Snail
  79. Lapsang souchong
  80. Bellini (heaven in a glass)
  81. Tom yum 
  82. Eggs Benedict (I will eat this anytime, anywhere, but Joe's low-fat version is amazing and guilt-free)
  83. Pocky 
  84. Tasting menu at a three-Michelin-star restaurant 
  85. Kobe beef
  86. Hare (One of our most memorable dinners in Tuscany; we'll share the recipe one of these days)
  87. Goulash
  88. Flowers (Cheese-stuffed squash blossoms in Rome? I'll go back any day.)
  89. Horse 
  90. Criollo chocolate (My ex-MIL made the best hot chocolate from this. Complicated but lovely.)
  91. Spam (meh.)
  92. Soft shell crab (meh.)
  93. Rose harissa
  94. Catfish (Tastes muddy. Do not like.)
  95. Mole poblano (We have several recipes, including Mole with Pork. Yum.)
  96. Bagel and lox (One of our traditional Christmas Day breakfasts.)
  97. Lobster Thermidor
  98. Polenta (Good for breakfast, lunch, or dinner.)
  99. Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee
  100. Snake

By the way, the Japanese blogger, Just Hungry, posted a list of 100 Japanese Foods to Try. If I find similar lists later on, I'll keep adding them.

6 comments:

Anonymous,  October 31, 2013 at 11:28 AM  

I don't have a blog, but... I've tried 31 of these. Not bad for a 20-year veteran of vegetarianism! There are only about 5 other ones that I would consider, due to the aforementioned vegetarianism. :)
-Teri Lynn

Angela Williams Duea October 31, 2013 at 12:00 PM  

Impressive! I found a vegan list that I'll post soon. I'll probably do much worse on that one due to my confirmed carnivore habits.

Kathleen,  October 31, 2013 at 3:14 PM  

I have had 41 of these. some were long ago. But the wildest was rattlesnake which I had when I lived in Phoenix.

Angela Williams Duea October 31, 2013 at 5:12 PM  

What does rattlesnake taste like? Would you eat it again?

Kathleen,  November 1, 2013 at 12:09 PM  

It had very little taste. It was breaded and fried and I could taste the fried breading but only a chewiness for the snake itself.

Angela Williams Duea November 1, 2013 at 1:20 PM  

Breaded and fried sounds delicious. As long as they take the poison out, of course!

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