I used to think me and Andrew Zimmern could hang out. Now, I’d rather kick Zimmern’s bizarre foods butt when it comes to embracing unusual eats. The reason we can’t hang out anymore is because on the Hawaii episode of Bizarre Foods, Zimmern dogs spam AND poi.
I can forgive you for not liking SPAM. Some people are just not down with strange meats. My friend attempted some smoked bear meat my cousin sent us and she just couldn’t do it. Disappointed, yes, but I forgive.
A food you really should give yourself time to develop a taste for is poi. It is a wonderfully tangy accompaniment to fish, pork, rice and is famous for it’s drippy purple appearance at Hawaiian lu’au.
I’m assuming poi is difficult to find outside of Hawaii. But, you will likely be able to get your hands on a taro root (what poi is made from) at an Asian foods store. Be warned: some would consider the taro root to be a bizarre food due to its slimy texture. There’s an interesting explanation of this on Just Hungry. I find it similar to potato and the texture doesn’t bother me.
You need to know that the hairy exterior of the taro root can sting your skin. You should take precautions when peeling it, such as wearing gloves. A vegetable peeler will do to peel it.
Prepare the taro root just as you would potatoes; roast, boil, make into chips. In the photo above, I made mine into a taro curry over rice.
While poi is made from the taro root, I have not attempted to prepare it. I’m a bit intimidated by the process.
I’d love to hear your bizarre foods escapades. What’s the weirdest thing you’ve ever tried?