Here Are Some Pointers BEFORE You Get That Vacation!

Travelling includes a lot of learning about different cultures, cuisines, and habits that are exclusive to a particular country. You get enlightened about the diversities in the world, some very unique while some extremely bizarre. While food remains an essential part of travel, here are some strange food habits adopted by different regions of the world. You should know them before you head to these countries to avoid falling into the pit of social embarrassment! 

Check them out and try to conform to the idea of it!

1. Greenland & Iceland - Rotten Food

Rotten Shark
Since the time of the Vikings in Greenland and Iceland, there is a known tradition of digging into rotten food. The most famous rotten delicacy would be the fermented Greenland shark meat. The shark lacks a kidney which renders a pungent taste to them, which is considered delicious to the local population residing there. They are kept for around 12 weeks under the ground, rested and then cooked. If this was not enough, Icelander also eat sheep's head jelly! 

2. Tanzania/ Kenya - Animal Blood

Cow Blood
The most bizarre of all is southern Kenya and Northern Tanzania. They relish animal blood, especially cow blood on some occasions. It is majorly restricted to the Masai people who use it as a potion of celebration. Be it the birth of a child or a marriage ceremony; they drink animal blood. It is also consumed to get rid of a hangover by some. That's not it. The procedure will give you spine chills. They insert a tube made of bamboo in the jugular vein of cows and suck the blood out. 

3. China - Thousand-Year Eggs

Century Eggs
China consumes delicacies out of thousand-year-old-eggs! The dish may sound very toxic to you, but the Chinese love it. Apparently, they sell like hot-cakes in some regions of China. They use toxic copper sulfate to speed up the maturity process instead of baking soda. Yikes! 

4. Korea - Mice Wine

Mice Wine
Korea sips down Mice Wine! Made with the ingredient which sounds downright disgusting, the mice infused in the drink extract medicinal properties. Prepared only out of newborn dead mice, they are made to rest in the drink for 12-14 months before it is served. If it matters, they are drowned hairless into the wine. For those who had the steel to drink it, has gone all tipsy in just a sip or two. As creepy as it sounds, it is true! 

5. Japanese Pufferfish

Japanese Pufferfish
Japanese pufferfish in Japan is a delicacy which is bloody expensive. It is such a royalty that people bid for the fish at auctions. Even though the fish is a luxury, it contains poisonous tetrodotoxin which requires careful preparation and prior knowledge before cooking. Sold particularly at high-end restaurants, the Japanese love this deadly protein. There are about 120 varieties of pufferfish and more than 22 preparations for the same. A particular variety  includes torafugu or tiger pufferfish

6. Burping in Egypt

Eating in Egypt
Do you think burping is a sign of disrespect to your fellow diners? Well, that's not the case in Egypt. It's considered extremely friendly to burp post a meal in Egypt as it indicates that the diner thoroughly relished the food and it is a dining etiquette. It is a token of appreciation which you can give to the chef! If you burp, they will be delighted and satisfied. Oh, and burp loud! 

7. Meditating With Magic Mushrooms In Siberia

Magic Mushrooms
A bit of magic mushrooms with meditation does wonders to your brain. Siberia firmly believes in this! Hail the magic mushrooms and go into deep concentration. It is said that you turn out to be more socially active, rendering happy moods frequently. How bizarre but magical, no? 

8. Don't Clear Your Plate in China!

If you thought clearing your plate out while dining in is a good sign, you're mistaken. In China, if you leave your plate empty, it is a sign that you're still hungry and unsatisfied. Leaving a small morsel means that you're full to the core and that your meal was a good one. It's amusing to see the culture shift from one part of the world to another. 

Other Bizarre Food Habits

Japan: While in Japan, Slurp on your Ramen! Considered as a mark of enjoyment, the louder your slurp on the food, the more you've relished your meal. It is music to the ears of a Japanese host. 

Also, in Japan, sticking a fork into your bowl of noodles is an insult! Master the art of using chopsticks, learn how to balance it out on your fingers before you head to Japan. They frown upon forks! 

Thailand: Use your fork but don't eat with it! Sounds weird, right? Thailand doesn't like it if you put the fork into your mouth. You know what the trick? Use the fork, put the food on a spoon and then eat it. Yeah, it's mindless, but that's what they believe in! 

Middle East: Eat only with your right hand in the middle east. It may be a mark of respect to eating with your right hand. Also, while eating, avoid licking your fingers or putting them in your mouth. They dislike the idea of it. Good luck with being a lefty here!

China: Japan's neighbour is also inclined towards using chopsticks. But for both countries, another habit that you need to be conscious about is not dipping your chopsticks straight into rice bowls. You'll be the centre of humour if you do so. It is a sign that resembles the use of traditional incense used to honour the dead.

South Korea: The hierarchy at the table in South Korea should be maintained. Respect the elders and let them proceed first. After they are seated, and they begin eating, only then can you dig in. No matter how much you're starving, elders always eat first, and you need to oblige that! 

Kazakhstan: If you get served a full cup of tea in Kazakhstan, it means that the host wants you to leave! If you get half a cup, it's a good sign. 

Britain: Dinner is not dinner in Britain. It could be lunch sometimes. The concept revolves around the term dinner, which tags it as the most important and the heaviest meal of the day. Therefore, in some restaurants, asking for dinner would be asking for a light snack meal which they call "supper". 

Iran: It has a bread tradition. Every meal of the day mostly includes a plate of bread on the table. But make sure you take it off with your hand only. Tear small pieces of bread and use the bread to scoop up the accompanying dish. There fails to be an explanation for it, though! 

Canada: If farting's your guilty pleasure, Canada allows you to fart away to glory after a meal. Even though the culture is prevalent in only some parts, it’s an act of appreciation for the host. 

Bedouin:  If you're done with drinking coffee, shake your cup before handing it over. You need to convey to the host or the waiter that you're done. Otherwise, you keep getting refills, and you have no option but to down the caffeine overdose!

So now you know the key to eating your food and the etiquettes you need to follow while visiting the stated countries. If you can't really adapt to them, you better starve until your return home! 

What according to you is the weirdest food habit? Leave us your replies in the comments below!

This post was published by Sony Punjabi

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