There’s no denying that Chinese food is loved and famous worldwide. So why do many foreigners often ask their Chinese friends: “Please just treat me to a good meal; don’t tell me what I am eating?” The truth is, there are some famous Chinese dishes that really make Westerners feel nauseous.
Let’s take a look at the foods considered unconsumable by most Westerners.
Chicken feet are delicacies for Chinese people, but Westerners might only eat them if they were starving to death.
Westerners watching people eat chicken feet for the first time may feel like throwing up. In the UK, millions of chicken feet are thrown into the landfills every year.
A Chinese netizen said: “On my way to the airport, I met a German girl who chatted with me during the 30-minute journey. She asked: “Do Chinese people really eat chicken feet? I replied: Yeah! When young girls are watching TV, they eat chicken claws as a snack. Upon hearing that, her face was filled with incredible messages.”
Organs, heads, ears, and tongues
A netizen dubbed Brother Sway posted his dismay over such foods after being introduced to them by his Chinese wife. He regards these delicacies as a nightmare.
“It’s understandable that Chinese people love to eat meat, but is there meat in chicken claws, duck tongues, or pig ears? I was shocked to see my wife’s family members eat such foods at almost every meal. I like fish a lot, but I can’t stand eating fish heads. I don’t eat anything with eyes that can stare back at me.”
The so-called “head” dishes are recipes made from the heads of chickens, ducks, fish, rabbits, etc. Their rich taste makes some Chinese become addicted to them, but most Westerners definitely would not try them, as they don’t like to eat the heads of creatures. On one hand, they think these things are very dirty; on the other, they are afraid to try them.
Typical stewed or boiled internal organs, such as pig liver, duck blood, beef tripe, pig intestines, and other foods made from animal blood, are not something that most Westerners can appreciate. They think such items are too dirty to be consumed by humans.
Fermented soybean curd
Fermented soybean curd, or “stinky tofu,” is made from pieces of soybean curd after it is fermented and preserved with salt. Some foreigners consider it to smell and taste rotten. It’s actually a traditional Chinese food that is commonly consumed.
Salted duck eggs
Many foreigners don’t like to eat salted duck eggs because they think the eggs smell bad. Salted duck eggs are made from eggs preserved with salt. Chinese people consider them to be very tasty, with an appealing color and flavor.
Century or thousand-year eggs were actually selected by CNN as one of the world’s most disgusting foods. In the eyes of Westerners, the blackened eggs that have been preserved in clay for several months have a weird taste, and look like spoiled cheese with a pungent smell.
Century eggs have been a favorite food among Chinese people for a long time. The most famous dishes made with century eggs are minced pork congee with preserved egg, 3-color eggs with bean curd, and bean curd with century eggs.
Absurd Chinese menus
Some foreigners visiting China complain that many Chinese restaurants only have menus in Chinese. As a result, they could only order meals arbitrarily, or do it according to the photos on the menus.
Even if an English menu is available, the translation is often weird or even appalling. For instance, Stewed Pork Balls in Brown Sauce translates to “Red Burned Lion Head.” Or how about “Curried Handheld Devices” or “Married Couple Sliced Lung” for dinner? It makes for a good laugh, but how is one supposed to order a meal?