Most Bizarre Canned Foods Around the World
Overlooking the trendiness of organic fresh food, it’s actually still perfectly alright to eat canned food too. Certain canned foods, like canned vegetables or canned tuna, preserve the goodness for long periods of time and are a more convenient way of eating healthier food when you don’t have easy access to fresh food markets.
That said, there are plenty of food that have no business being in a can — The Daily Meal looked at a few of the ones we’re more familiar with, like canned whole chicken, squid, cheeseburgers, and hot wings. These are the foods that put paid to the adage that just because you can do something (like can roasted scorpions), that doesn’t mean you should.
But that’s just the start; across the world cultures have made it a habit of canning their favorite foods, sometimes in curious ways. In Asia and Southeast Asia there is a longstanding tradition of incorporating edible birds’ nests into cooking — it makes a gelatinous base for many dishes and is very popular. But canning birds’ nests as an energy drink is perhaps a more liberal interpretation of that cooking tradition.
Similarly, in Mexico, huitlacoche is popular in many culinary dishes, though something may have been lost in translation with the canned version of this parasitic fungus that grows on corn.
Other foods like creamed armadillos on a half-shell could make you feel like some people may be taking the option to can their favorite foods a little too far; click through our slideshow to see if you agree.
Grass Jelly — Vietnam
You can get it as canned chunks of jelly, or even as an energy drink. Grass jelly, or leaf jelly, is popular in across Asia, particularly in Vietnam, China, Indonesia, and Malaysia. The pressed juice from a combination of three regional plants is apparently high in nutrients and very sweet.
Reindeer Meat — Finland
While reindeer may be a staple and acceptable food source in Finland, there’s still no good reason the meat should be canned indefinitely. Canned reindeer is also controversial because of its questionably traumatic harvesting process of acquiring the meat.
Serusha Govender is The Daily Meal's Travel Editor. Follow her on Twitter @SerushaGovender