Weird Korean Eats, part 1

Last weekend I went to a bar in my neighborhood for chicken and beer, only to be served some of these as an appetizer:


Beondegi (silk worm larvae) are a very popular street-food snack in Korea. The smell that accosts you when walking past a beondegi street vendor is absolutely awful, and difficult to describe except it’s exactly what you’d imagine drifting out of a bubbling, steaming vat of silk worm larvae.

Needless to say, they didn’t exactly whet my appetite. But I knew before I left Korea, I would have to try them, and finding them right in front of me – sans the smell of a freshly-boiled batch – I figured it was as good a time as any. It was a bit soft and chewy, although I must admit I didn’t take much time to chew it before swallowing. My friend’s bite popped and spurted goo into his mouth, so I guess I was lucky. The taste was bitter and very unpleasant, although entirely familiar from the number of times it had already filled my nose and mouth walking past them on the street. It was almost as if I had eaten them before.

The final verdict: not something I need to try again. But I’m glad I did once!

bon appetit!


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