Are you willing to try new things, especially food?
Are you always excited to try out a new restaurant or a new recipe? If yes, then we’ve got just something for you.
We’re talking about a new food called Balut. Of course, it’s not that new since it is quite popular in South East Asian countries.
But not everyone has tried it or heard about it in the rest of the world.
Balut tastes funky and crunchy at the same time and has an entirely different taste from all the foods you may have tried.
Be adventurous and try it once.
What is Balut?
Balut is a developing egg embryo of a duck or chicken that you boil and eat from the shell. It is typical street food in China.
But Balut is more popular in the Philippines, and people consume it as their staple diet.
The Chinese introduced Balut to the Philippines in 1565 or around 1885. It is now a part of their traditional culture.
The word “Balut’ itself is a Filipino term, so you can already take a guess where it’s more popular.
It is a cheap source of protein and calcium for consumers. It is considered an aphrodisiac and folk medicine for the locals.
What Does Balut Taste Like? Does Balut Taste Good?
The taste of Balut is similar to chicken soup with an unusual texture. Balut has a mild savory flavor with a fermented hint of undertone.
According to Mashed, eating Balut is like “eating a creamy and fluffy pudding.” Other consumers have compared it to the taste of custard.
The taste of Balut differs according to the incubation period of the egg.
The eggs are incubated for a period of 14 to 21 days, depending on the culture.
The longer incubated embryos tend to be chewier, and the earlier ones tend to be soft.
The albumen of Balut has a rubbery texture making it tough to eat.
Usually, it is thrown away with the skin instead of eating it. Moreover, you cannot consume it in raw form.
Since Balut embryo consists of eggs of chicken and duck, both have different textures.
Chicken yolk tends to be a bit runnier, while the duck embryo’s texture has more yolk on it. The locals tend to eat duck embryos more than chicken.
Eating it for the first time can be quite off-putting for you. But once you get the hang of it, it is quite delicious.
Eating Balut is like eating a granola or power bar. Filipinos believe that eating Balut can help you sleep better.
Many Filipinos crack open a Balut to eat before going to bed.
According to FatSecret, the calorie counter and diet tracker for weight loss, eating a Balut egg of a duck contain more than 150 calories, enough for a big snack.
How to Eat Balut?
Balut is best to take in fermented form, and it is quite tricky to get it to the right texture.
Mama’s Guide Recipes advises its readers to choose eggs from mated flocks and not more than five days old.
Heated rice is poured over the Balut eggs once the eggs’ heating is complete after five hours.
After the eggs have been turned twice or thrice in a day, they are ready for consumption on the 12th day.
Usually, eggs taken out after the 18th day are the best to eat.
In the Philippines, people eat Balut with a pinch of salt, vinegar, chili, and vinegar for taste enhancement.
Similarly, in Vietnam and Cambodia, it is also eaten with only a little garnish like lime juice and ground pepper.
The best way to eat Balut is to make it scrambled, beaten, and fried with a little bit of vinegar dip.
Be careful not to eat Balut raw since it can give indigestion and even food poisoning.
Balut’s shelf life is only one day, so it is advisable to eat it once prepared. If refrigerated, it is safe to eat within a week. But, do not eat it cold.
Eating Balut is a controversial topic since many people are taken aback by the developing embryo’s sight.
One look at the veins of the yolk can quickly make someone refrain from it.
But, it is an acquired taste. Once you love it, there’s no going back. The experience will be a learning process for you.