They’re weird, they’re costly and they don’t exactly go down easy. Check out these oddball and pricey foods you won’t find at your local restaurant or supermarket:
Square Watermelons — Really?
A store in Vancouver is selling square watermelons for the “bargain” price of just $199.99. They’re grown in strong glass boxes in Japan, and as you might have guessed, they’re a lot easier to stack and cut than your basic orb melons. And no, they’re not GMO. Since they only grow a few hundred of these box-shaped melons, they have to charge a premium for them. A decade ago you could pick one up for just $99. Inflation has shot up the price to the aforementioned $199.99. People are buying them as novelty items only. And for good reason: since they’re harvested before they’re ripe, they taste like crap — way too bitter!
Balut — Sip and Crunch
Basically, a fertilized duck or chicken egg that’s allowed to develop embryonically. Boiled and served with chili vinegar, you eat the balut by first sipping the embryonic liquid from the shell, then chew the embryo until all the bones are cracked (ew). Favored by native Filipinos.
Roasted Camel — Mandible Workout
If you want to chew this gamy meat ‘till the camels come home, try some roasted camel—grilled, kabob or in a sandwich. Seeing the severed heads of the camel meat you’re about to eat tends to ruin the appetite—but that’s what Casablanca butchers do to advertise these treats.
Cod Sperm — Slimy, Best with Sake
Yep. It’s what it sounds like — slimy and disgusting sacks of sperm. If forced to eat this delicacy in Japan, order some sake to wash away the taste. Drink enough of it and you may even forget you ate sperm sacks out of cultural respect.
Cane Rat — Relish the Rodent
Just the sight of this bad boy on a plate is enough to make you gag. Served in China, you eat it with eyes wide shut and a close pin on your nose.
Hákarl — Save the Shark and Your Stomach
Shark meat cured in a gravel and snow pit for up to three months and left to dry for another couple of months. If it’s between eating it and swimming through shark infested waters, take the swim.