Asians apparently eat anything.
The coronavirus now sweeping the world came from a “wet market” in Wuhan, China, which sells all kinds of exotic animals like bats, pangolins, live wolf pups, salamanders, civets, and bamboo rats.
Now, it turns out Japan eats some weird stuff, too.
“The giant hornet, along with other varieties of wasps, has traditionally been considered a delicacy in this rugged part of the country,” the New York Times reported. “The grubs are often preserved in jars, pan-fried or steamed with rice to make a savory dish called hebo-gohan. The adults, which can be two inches long, are fried on skewers, stinger and all, until the carapace becomes light and crunchy. They leave a warming, tingling sensation when eaten.”
And they drink the hornets’ venom, too.
“The hornets can also give liquor an extra kick. Live specimens are drowned in shochu, a clear distilled beverage. In their death throes, the insects release their venom into the liquid, and it is stored until it turns a dark shade of amber.”
The invasive species, which was first spotted in Washington state in December (shortly before another Asian import — SARS-CoV-2, which causes COVID-19 — arrived) mostly attacks honey bees, which pollinate some fruits and vegetables, as well flowers.
“These hornets will actually come into colonies, and they will decapitate the bees at the hive. They can decimate an entire colony.” Honey bees and other native bees are important to the agriculture industry and “food sustainability,” University of Tennessee entomologist Jennifer Tsurda told WVLT News.
Lots of Asians eat bizarre things. The Japanese eat wasp crackers (boiled wasps dried and baked into crackers), fish sperm, tuna eyeballs, and duck embryos. Koreans eat raw horse meat, dog soup, silkworm pupae, fried tarantula, live octopus tentacles, crushed tortoise shell, and sea urchin gonads, while the Chinese eat toads, pigeons, scorpions, grasshoppers, blood soup, sharkfin soup — and live shrimp!