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Da Nang Honey Time (Part 3): We ate ducklings... I mean duck eggs

Yes, you read that right.

In the Philippines, this "nutritious delicacy" is known as balut. In Vietnam, it's called hột vịt lộn. Vịt means duck.

In English, it means half-hatched duck eggs, which also means, there's a HALF-FORMED DUCKLING in that egg!

From now onwards, I'm staying away from anything that has the word vịt on the menu in any Vietnamese restaurant. Who knows if they serve duck testicles (haha...) or something. :S


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How did we end up with ducklings... I mean duck eggs, in our tummy? Here's the story.

We were taking a 4.3km romantic night walk from the beach back to our hotel when we came across a roadside stall. Hubby and I spoke zero Vietnamese while the old lady manning the stall couldn't speak English. We were having a hard time deciding on which stuff to order when she pointed at hột vịt lộn. We agreed without arguing, thinking it might be some sort of noodles.

  
We were served with two white-shelled eggs, rau răm (Vietnamese mint), radish and papaya pickle, and a small bowl of mixed salt and pepper. 

A little bit disappointed, we thought, "oh, soft-boiled eggs." Then, she cracked the egg shells and when the whole thing dropped into our bowls, we saw FEATHERS!!! I almost fainted. I knew right away what they were because I've seen similar eggs in the Philippines.

O_O


Found this description on Wikipedia:
The age of the egg before it can be cooked is a matter of local preference. In the Philippines, the ideal balut is 17 days old. The chick inside is not old enough to show its beak, feathers or claws, and the bones are undeveloped. The Vietnamese often prefer their balut mature from 19 days up to 21 days, when the chick is old enough to be recognizable as a baby duck and has bones that will be firm but tender when cooked.

Arghhh!!! 

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