Season 0, Episode 21
Despite the onslaught of globalization, there are still groups around the world that cling to the food traditions of their ancestors. Andrew visits those pockets of authenticity to sample classics of every continent.
In Asia, he prowls the street markets of Beijing, China to taste crispy grilled cicadas and raw sea urchins. Andrew meets Chef Luu Meng in Phnom Penh for a typical Cambodian meal made with their traditional fermented fish paste, and in Thailand he visits a small village to see how the famous Thai fish stomach sauce is still made by hand by women gutting fish on the ground outside their small huts.
Islands of the Pacific offer a different fish experience and Andrew finds a family that still makes Hawaiian dishes the old fashioned way, by scraping the spine and blood line of tuna. Off the coast of Samoa, Andrew catches giant yellow fin tuna with Captain Alfred, and gets to try a beating heart cut from his catch along with a traditional Samoan delicacy of palolo, or spoiled worm paste. And Australia offers a wide range of classic dishes at the Darwin Mindil Beach market, where Andrew samples skewers of meat from crocodile, emu and camel.
Africans give Andrew a warm welcome starting with the village of Lwanika in Uganda, where they have no refrigeration, so he eats goat meat smoked and salted, along with matooke, which are steamed green bananas and goat stomach lining and intestines. In Tanzania, Andrew stokes up for a full day of climbing with a breakfast of Supu, a soup made of multiple animal innards including goat lungs, heart, liver, cow intestines, tongue and tail.
Some of the most iconic foods of Europe are getting harder to find these days, as Andrew discovers when he hunts for bull testicles, made famous by Spanish bullfights. But he finds some fresh bull balls in Madrid's Mercado de la Paz, and gets them cooked at a nearby stall in the market. In Venice, Andrew takes to the Lagoon to fish for the traditional cuttlefish, used in many dishes there. But he gets more than he bargained for when the cuttlefish refuses to give up quietly, and bites back.
In South America's quintessential party town, Rio de Janeiro, Andrew gets a samba dance lesson at a huge community fundraising bash called a Feijoada party, where he eats heaps of the main dish, a stew of every part of the pig and cow, from feet to tripe to tail. In the Bazurto market of Cartagena, Colombia, Andrew finds traditional specialties like turtle, chicken and rodents, normally stewed with coconut milk, peppers, tomatoes, onions and vinegar. And in Lima, Peru, Andrew chokes down a few gulps of a frog milkshake, a health drink handed down through the culture of the Andean mountains.
And finally, North America has so many diverse cultures, each with its own iconic foods. He visits the rural sugar shack of Montreal chef Martin Picard for a feast where everything is coated or cooked in the maple syrup Picard taps on the premises. It's a huge change of scenery and culinary pace when Andrew stops at the Big Apple Inn of Jackson, Mississippi, for their signature pig ear sandwiches. And finally, Andrew goes along with the Aaron family to trap muskrats on the Chesapeake Bay, learns how to skin them and remove the noxious musk gland, and then how to cook them with a generations-old recipe.
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