The Philippines have several exotic dishes not very popular to the western world. Besides the common balut( boiled fertilized duck eggs) and dinugu-an ( blood pudding made from cow's internal organs, tripe etc..), I have tasted several other exotic Filipino dishes as follows:
1. Ginataang kuhol (Snail cooked in coconut milk) and Suso' ( escargo) There are varieties of snails being cooked and eaten in the Philippines. Ginataang kuhol or suso is sautéed with garlic, onion, ginger and pepper plus coconut milk. There are also other ways of cooking these snails. The creek under the bridge at the Chateau Du Mer Beach Resort in Marinduque is filled with Suso that my workers harvest for their lunch and dinner along with their steam rice.
2. Fried Crickets and grasshopper Crickets are usually deep fried.
3. Bull Testicles Soup- I tried to taste this one. I had not the courage to swallow a mouthful. It was just too rich for my taste buds. .
4. Adobong pusa or cat adobo or dog stew Do you know that even cats/dogs are eaten by people in the Philippines? They cook it in adobo style, sautéed with garlic, onion and laurel leaf seasoned with soy sauce and vinegar. This is a favorite appetizer during their drinking spree. I have tasted the dog stew but not the cat adobo. Who eat their pets anyway?
5. Kilawing bunog (raw young of a mudfish) These are eaten raw spiced up with vinegar or citrus juice, pepper, and salt.
6. Adobo o pritong palaka (adobo or fried frogs) Frogs can be cooked in adobo style or deep fried. It’s tastier than chicken. There are also some people in the Philippines that eat legs of bullfrogs cooked in the same manner. The native frogs thrived very well at the Chateau Du Mer Beach Resort in Marinduque. I have eaten frog legs in a French restaurant here in the US.
7. Adobong ahas (snake adobo): This dish is also cooked in adobo style. Snake is commonly eaten in Asia because of its medicinal value. It’s also a good source of protein and supposed to be an aphrodisiac. I have tasted this dish when I was a little boy in the jungles of Panay Island during the Japanese-American War in the Philippines. It tasted like chicken.
8. Adobong bayawak/itlog (monitor lizard meat/eggs) It is sautéed in garlic and onion, ginger and laurel leaf with pepper, soy sauce, and vinegar or more popularly called adobo. This is perfect for “pulutan” (food appetizer while drinking wine or liquor). The eggs are usually cook by simply boiling it, it taste salty and delicious. Their eggs are considered exotic because it’s rare and hard to find. My workers here at Chateau Du Mer had caught several bayawaks about two years ago and made it into adobo for their sumsuman( appetizer during a drinking party)
Bizarre it may seem but these eight items listed here are eaten in the Philippines. There are other exotic dishes in the Philippines not listed here. If you need more information read the reference cited below. Want to try some?