We like to think of ourselves as pretty multicultural here in America. We eat food from all over the world. Right? So what if our version of pizza is nothing like what you’d find in Italy. To us, it’s Italian. Look how many choices we have at our local Chinese Buffet. We’ve all braved some new, unfamiliar item once in a while, but there’s nothing at Main Moon that can compare with what you can eat in Beijing. Someone sent me an email of food vendors selling bugs and such, expertly skewered and fried. From beetles and scorpions to starfish and lizard legs- none of them would have made it into my blue cheese dip! The photo here is only one of about a dozen, every one more scary than the rest. Okay, I admit I am not all that adventurous when it comes to new food, but the hundreds of people lined up at these neon street vendor carts looked delighted!
I saw the same thing on an Olympic TV spot last night, and the commentator made the rounds of restaurants to sample local delights. The fungus soup is probably a lot less scary than goose lips (flaps of skin still attached to the beak) or duck’s webbed feet wrapped in a thin pancake. Gack! I knew they ate a lot of dog meat, but rat brain soup (with the skulls in it)???
There was a lot of concern over food for our teams because of the recent spate of tainted foods from China. Seeing their menu, I’m not at all sure the insecticides and pesticides were the bigger dangers. I read that a chef for the US team bought a chicken breast in China last year…actually a half of a breast that measured 14 inches! He said it was so full of steroids that if our Olympians ate it, they would all fail the drug tests! See for yourself at http://www.iht.com/articles/2008/02/10/sports/OLY.php
The US team arranged to have 25,000 pounds of lean protien sent to Beijing, but I’d be very worried about the side dishes! Maybe it’s all a matter of taste. After all, my cat Sneakie Pie has been known to eat a fly or two. Thanks, I’ll pass.