Monday, October 5, 2009

Free Escargot!!

Just the thought of having a snails chewy little meat sliding down ones tongue sounds like the makings of one of those reality shows where people are dared to do unreasonably gross things for the viewers morbid pleasure.

It is an interesting exercise in self understanding to kind of step back out of ones point of reference and ask "Why do I feel that way?" "Why is it gross?" "This food is enjoyed in other cultures...why not mine?" Food prejudices that are developed in a culture may or may not be based on good reasoning. Silly superstitions...prejudices based upon a food being what "poor" people eat...or some such reason could be keeping you from enjoying what could be your favorite food!

American's generally have a taste aversion to eating snails and yet the common garden snail that is to found in our yards is closer on the family tree to the clams...mussels...oysters...and squid that many eat at their fine restaurants...than they would want to hear about. I wonder if anyone would notice if that clam dip at the party was in fact a snail dip?

That common garden snail that we are fighting to keep from eating our garden greens is in fact the same snail that is hunted for eating in France!! It is called the European Brown or "Helix Aspersa"

While I don't expect that you are going to be thrilled about the prospect...and give up hamburgers in favor of snailburgers. I think it is worthwhile to know that in hard times...or true survival situation...there is meat available that...

You don't have to shoot!
You don't have to fish for...
It won't outrun you...
It won't bite or scratch you...
It won't make awful sounds...
You don't have to clean out bloody guts...

Here is an article about a man in San Franciso who eats snails that will teach you a bit about preparation and give some other useful information. While some people do eat raw snails...know that you could run the risk of getting sick if the snail recently ate snail bait...or if it is carrying parasites. The simple preparation described in that article will ensure that they are safe.

If the thought of eating snail grosses you out...or you say "My family would never eat it". My reply is..."Then you don't know how hungry you could get...and how desperate!" Your family might find it more palatable...first of all...if you don't tell them what it is!!...but second of all if you have it in the context of a dish like some food storage pasta! Snail Rigatoni...YUM!!


  1. Have you tried it then and if so, what does it taste like? I also don't like food that has rubbery textures.

  2. Well...I've got to tell you. No I haven't tried it. Frankly...the thought of it kind of grosses me out. I've heard people say it is delicious...and others say it was totally disgusting. It may be like many things...that it all depends on how it was prepared. Personally my interest in it isn't for it's value on my table currently...heck...we don't really eat much meat as it is...but for more of a worse case scenario source of "meat". Rubbery is only good when it comes to gummy worms!