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Top Strange but Delicious Foods
Although it's quick and simple, a list can be just as educational as it is easy to read. That's the idea behind TravelsinTaste.com's new "Lists" feature, which includes lists of some of the country's most exciting food trends, innovative ingredients, unusual restaurants, intriguing cocktails and more. Our editors have scoured America's kitchens, markets and menus in search of the most up-to-date, unusual items for your reading -- and dining – pleasure, then published them in a convenient, easy-to-chew list format. Scan, savor and enjoy!

    
   
If you were to stop in at your local diner, it is very unlikely that you would find snails, horse, fermented soy beans, or camel on the menu. You may find snails in restaurants that are a touch more upscale but you would be incredibly hard pressed to find the other three foods on any menu in the United States. Some Americans may never have the chance to sample such foods because they would have to travel great distances just to be in a position to find them. However, even if they did manage to make the trip to, say, Japan or Egypt, they would also have to be adventurous enough to actually have a taste of these strange, but delicious, delicacies. So, for those of you that are thinking of traveling and have a brave palate, here are some peculiar, but definitely delectable, foods that are absolutely worth a try.

4. Horse Sashimi
Horse meat is actually something that many countries embrace as being edible without feeling morally put out but unless you happen to be in Japan, odds are it won't be served to you raw. Basashi, as it is called in restaurants in Japan, is a wonderfully surprising treat. It is typically served with either freshly ground ginger or freshly ground garlic and soy sauce. Typically, it is taken with just a dab of either flavoring with a few paper thin slices of cucumber and dipped in soy sauce. The second the meat touches your tongue, it immediately starts to melt and all of the flavors wash over your taste buds in a sweet, salty and spicy mix of eye-widening delight.

3. Camel Steaks
If you happen to make your way to Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Libya, or other parts of Africa and the Middle East, you might consider giving camel a try. It is prepared, essentially, in the same way that beef is and tastes very similar, as well. The only major difference between the two is texture. Camel is coarser and has an almost sponge-like texture. If you're brave enough to order some, be sure to ask for the hump; it happens to be the best, most-favored part of this delicacy.

   
     
    
2. Fermented Soybeans
Nattou may not seem all that strange on paper, especially to fans of other soy products like tofu, soymilk, and miso soup, but if you've ever seen someone eat it or been close enough to smell it, you might be a bit intimidated by it. It is characterized by a very distinct and, to some, unpleasant odor and a very sticky texture caused by a glue-like liquid that forms naturally during the fermenting process. It is typically eaten during breakfast and can be mixed with any number of condiments including soy sauce, mustard and raw egg. At less than a dollar per serving, you won't have to be guilty about not liking this little treat.

1. Escargot
You don't necessarily have to fly all the way to Paris just to eat a snail as this delicacy has wriggled its way into America and can be found in most French restaurants. Typically, the snail is removed from the shell, cooked in garlic butter and a bit of parsley, placed back in the shell, and served on a plate made to hold the shells upright. Snails aren't necessarily flavorless but they almost always seem to be the complementary flavor in their own dish. They are still, like all of the foods detailed here, worth trying, even if only for the experience of trying something new and satisfying your curiousity.

Just beware, there is no evidence, empirical or otherwise, as to the safety or efficacy of this potency of the combinations noted.

   
     
      
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