Oh, Balut! It’s a staple in Vietnamese and Filipino cuisines, yet many other cultures consider it a ‘bizarre food.’ I’ve always loved Balut. For those unfamiliar with the dish, it’s fertilized eggs with partially developed duck embryos. The description just adds to the ickiness for those unadventurous eaters. What they should really call it is an eggy, goodness explosion!
If you want to try Balut, it’s really important to go to a resturant that serves the dish. If they know how to pick the Balut, then you will never encourter the problems mentioned above. A perfectly cooked Balut tastes like chicken soup. You shouldn’t even be able to tell you’re smashing up a duckling with each bite.
I have found the Balut at Banh Xeo Quan to be quite consistent and delicious. They are only avaiable there on weekends for $2.50 a piece. Make sure to add herbs and some salt and pepper!
If you’re still not sure about Balut, I’d suggest ordering one and just drinking the soup and eating the yolk. You can totally just scoop out the duck and work your way up to it!
Balut, served Vietnamese style in Hoi An, Vietnam. A fertized duck embryo that is boiled and eaten. Also known as trứng vịt lộn or hột vịt lộn in Vietnamese, pong tia koon in Cambodian, balut in Pilipino. Delicious. Soul food of Southeast Asia.
Today BALUT. Calling all my PINOY friends to help comment on this. Salamat!. A devellopping duck embryo, boiled and eaten in Southern Asian countries but mainly in Philippines, as it is considered a delicacy. Not for the feint hearted, which i think is based on cultures, usually eaten warm, as they are kept in sand bucket. The concept is to sipped the juice which is usually season with salt or vinegar depending on taste, then peeled and eaten as is. It usually takes between 8 to 10 days to fertilize the duck eggs before being cooked. Now, my question to you is, what are you having for dinner??
SO. Roughly, the chicken or duck egg is 14-19 days old then you boil it…..
After it’s boiled, you poke a hole at the bottom and drain the broth inside which tastes really good like a yummy chicken broth.
Then you start peeling… If your a beginner I only peel it half way then eat it so I don’t see the chicky, but for the sake of today I peeled it all the way… :[
Ok, so the egg is lined with a thin layer of protection that’s all veiny, and the yolk is what the chick eats within the shell.. The yolk is NOT the chick. It’s it’s food source…
The white goes to the top of the egg and gets really hard and rubbery. Then there’s the chick. At this point, the chick has eyes, feathers vital organs and is growing it’s beak and wings…
No, it’s not hard or boney. All through out it’s just very very soft chicken. Very flavourful. [brown meat taste]
Same with the yolk. The consistency is more dry/chalky but it has more of a poultry flavouring….
So, most people that can get over the fact and image of the fetus, tend to really love the taste… I’ve never heard a complaint about the taste in all honesty… Just complaints of what it is, how it looks and the over all shudder factor on it.
[random fact: they had balut on fear factor]
I’ll be truthful, I did have a good dry heave when taking it apart and putting it in my mouth… But because it’s the first time I really looked at it… And just…. Yeah.
But it would have been such a waste and so disrespectful to dump it in the trash so I had to consume it….
A bit like with a Kinder Surprise, you certainly will be surprised to open these eggs, though not in the same pleasant way as finding a toy inside. You get to eat your chicken and your egg at the same time with Balut.
Fertilized eggs are boiled just before they’re due to hatch, so your yolk oozes out followed by… a chicken (or duck) foetus. They are cooked when the foetus is anywhere from 17 days to 21 days depending on your preference, although when the egg is older the foetus begins to have a beak, claws, bones and feathers.
In Filipino culture Balut is almost as popular as the hot dog in America and street vendors yell out ‘Baluuuuuuut’ as they push their carts down the street. They are popularly believed to boost the libido and are also a hearty snack full of protein. Balut are usually guzzled down with beer and are prepared with a pinch of salt, lemon juice, black pepper and coriander, although some Balut eaters prefer it with chili and vinegar. The way to eat Balut is to crack open the egg, sip the broth and then eat the yolk and foetus…it’s not everyone’s cup of tea, but apparently it’s delicious.