Sunday, March 18, 2007

Grotesque food 3: damn their eyes!

Some of my more sophisticated readers may have had the pleasure of watching the Iron Chef, where they make all sorts of strange foods deserving of the title Grotesque. Some of you may even have seen the episode where the gourmet chef serves up a roasted Tuna Eyeball, still in its socket, and the judges all love it. Sitting in your loungerooms in various foreign countries, surely you would have thought this was a put-on, some kind of crazy double dare.

Sadly not. The Deligthful Miss E and I visited the loungeroom of my supervisor, the Inscrutable Professor N, last weekend, and amongst the many excellent dishes prepared for us was a whole Snapper baked in salt. Of course such a snapper comes complete with intact head, and at his 7 year old son's request the Inscrutable Professor N pulled out both eyeballs and plopped them, half-deflated, onto Professor N Junior's plate. If any of you are familiar enough with Black Adder to remember the line "We shall sup on their exquisite floppily -doppilies" you will know exactly how I felt when looking at this slimy concoction smeared across Professor N Junior's plate. But worse was to come! For he immediately popped the slimy mess into his mouth, chewed it around a bit and then popped out a small white ball, for all the world like ping-pong ball the size of half a marble, and daintily returned it to his plate. I prodded this bulbous little monstrosity with my chopsticks and confirmed it was, indeed, too hard to eat. Professor N Junior had begged for that eyeball just so that he could slurp off the slimy stuff and spit out the inedible remainder. Hmmmmmmmm.

The most disturbing part of this tale is that Professor N Junior was decidedly disinterested in the remainder of the fish. He had to be sternly admonished to eat some of the fish's flesh before his father would grant him access to the only part he wanted - the drapery of slime oozing from the eye socket.

And he ate both!!


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