For those that follow the twitter, you know I did something slightly… unusual yesterday. I ate a few things that you don't normally find on western menus. Things you don't normally consider eating. Things if seen in the wild, you'd probably run away screaming like a little girl.
I ate snake.
I ate centipede.
And the pièce de résistance… I ate scorpion.
But let me back up and take you on a tour of the great, famous, Donghuamen Market in Beijing (also seen written as the DongHuaMen Night Market, although it's open during the day).
Breaking tradition, I can't resist posting this movie on here. When we walked into the market, we immediately ran into a TV crew from Curaçao, traveling with Shawn Crawford, winner of the 200m Silver, who were trying to talk themselves into eating something bizarre. They finally settled on the snake (tame enough), but when I ordered a centipede, they couldn't resist getting in on the action. With cameras rolling, the host bit into his snake while I gnawed on the centipede. We traded sticks, and sampled each-others snacks. As you can see in this video, snake and centipede are not high on the yummy list in the islands!! You'll also see the devastation of one crispy scorpion. Delicious!
The video is also on my MobileMe gallery.
My dining experience even merited a comment on Vincent Laforet's Newsweek.com blog! LOL…
This is where to find the Donghaumen Market. On Google it's listed as Dong'anmen St., but I'll stick with the spelling on the sign I photographed there.
This market is amazing, selling pretty much everything you would ever think not to eat. They sell starfish, centipede, grub, scorpion, snake, all kinds of internal organs, and — wait for it — sheep penis. No, I did not put that in my mouth.
Pictures speak louder than words. Check it out…
Selection of scorpions (I ate the smaller ones, thank you!)
Scorpion already fried and ready to be reheated
Soft shelled crab
Soft shelled crab cooking
Yep… there it is. Sheep penis.
Of course the market doesn't just sell the bizarre. It also had a great selection of fruits, vegetables, noodles, and different meats. Not that I'd eat any of that crap.
Little boy eating corn
Old woman eating noodles
What an experience. Even if you don't have the cojones to eat any of these delicacies yourself, no trip to Beijing would be complete without this bizarre experience. You gotta go!
In fact… I'm rating this "restaurant" with 5 feet… because damnit, it rocks!!