Has a first name, has a second name, has a third name

Apropos of nothing, today I learned that bologna goes by many names in its various guises:

Distant cousins are:

Woof. The loaf variants are starting to gross me out. Let’s not invite them to the next Circle Meat family gathering, okay?

Photo of the Dachshund UN by Craig Bush on Flickr

Etiquette & superstition: eating mice

A word to the squeamish: I do not recommend doing an image search for the phrase “eating mice.” For some reason I was trying to find a cute photo of a little rodent with stuffed cheeks, and now my day is ruined. I do, however, now have an etiquette & suspicion topic.

ETIQUETTE: If you find yourself in the Mekong Delta or at a dinner party in the 19th century hosted by William Buckland, you may be offered roasted or fried mice for dinner. Unless you are a vegetarian, you should at least give it a taste. If you pull the lame “my doctor has me on a strict diet” deflection to avoid eating something unpleasant, you run the risk of missing out on the best dessert you would have ever tasted in your life that was to have been the next course. Come on; give it a try. Maybe you can get it prepared with a nice little garlic sauce, which I hear is really quite good.

SUPERSTITION: The eating of a roasted mouse is said to be an excellent cure for whooping cough, epilepsy, sore throats, measles and bedwetting.

Photo of mice eating peanut butter by n28ive1 on Flickr

Just the thing for a cold winter’s day

Times are tough. Times are tough. Times are tough. I get it. Thankfully, The Wall Street Journal is here to help with some recipes. Here’s just one:

Rat Stir Sauteed with Spring Onion and Herbs

2 cups fragrant khotweed
Several spring onions
Quarter cup of fish sauce
Two cleaned and gutted rats, chopped into chunks
Half cup of vegetable oil
Fresh basil

  • Mix the rat chunks in a bowl with fragrant khotweed and spring onions. Add the fish sauce. Let stand for 10 minutes to allow the flavors to sink into the rat meat.
  • Then, gently heat the vegetable oil over low heat and add the mixture, slowly stirring. Cook for ten minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • Serve with steamed rice or rice noodles. Garnish with fresh basil.

Also, a tip from the accompanying story: “For connoisseurs of rat meat, slightly chubby rats are the most sought after.” That seems fairly obvious. But what is khotweed? There is something off-putting about that name. Fragrant khotweed. I think I’ll pass.

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