Bull penis, bat soup, maggot cheese: Can you stomach new Swedish museum exhibit?
A fruit bat used in a soup eaten by people in Guam (Disgusting Food Museum)
Published Wednesday, October 3, 2018 9:24PM EDT
From maggot-infested cheese to aged shark meat, a new museum is set to open in Sweden this month that will showcase the world's most "disgusting" foods.
It's called simply the "Disgusting Food Museum." But its name is a bit of a misnomer. Because the exhibit isn't only meant to make visitors recoil in horror and balk at the exotic food tastes of cultures around the world.
It's actually meant to challenge people's notions of food and open their eyes to what's edible and what's not.
As museum curators point out, disgust is an evolutionary and biological response that helps humans avoid disease and foods that have spoiled.
But just as one man's trash is another man's treasure, what's delicious to some can be considered revolting to others.
The overarching question being posed by curators?
"Could changing our ideas of disgust help us embrace the environmentally sustainable foods of the future?"
Bull penis, which is served in parts of China, is on display in a new Swedish museum exhibit. (Disgusting Food Museum)
The Swedish museum exhibit will showcase spicy rabbit head. (Disgusting Food Museum)
The same question has been central to a decade-old United Nation's food campaign, which challenges the world's richest countries to wean themselves off meat and turn instead to insects for protein.
Though the concept of eating hard-shelled, winged and other assorted bugs may be hard to swallow in the Western world, insects are common staples across parts of Asia and Africa.
Some of the exhibited delicacies include:
- Surstömming – fermented herring from Sweden.
- Cuy – roasted guinea pigs from Peru.
- Casu marzu – maggot-infested cheese from Sardinia
- Stinky tofu – pungent bean curd from China.
- Hákarl – well-aged shark from Iceland.
- Durian – infamously stinky fruit from Thailand.
Meanwhile, the Swedish exhibit will feature 80 of the "the world's most disgusting foods" including durian, the fruit so stinky it's been banned in public in parts of Asia; Casu marzu, or cheese crawling with maggots from Sardinia; bull penis; and Jell-O salad.
The Disgusting Food Museum opens in Malmo, Sweden, October 29 and runs until January 27, 2019.