Horse is a Meat, of Course, of Course

Hi everyone– I apologize for the lack of posts over the past couple of weeks, as I had last-minute plans to be in Hong Kong.

Recently, I read about a Queens, NY restaurant that was planning to serve horse meat, yet quickly rescinded those plans when the Animal Supporters Society (…or similar, actual groups) and health organizations voiced their displeasure.  The equine is saved from the dinner plate once more.  In New York City.  But drive up to Quebec, Canada, and you can find Monsieur Ed, chilling in the supermarket.

Or, if you’re not too interested in separatist movements, try a visit to Japan.  Japan, the country that prides itself in cleanliness, multiple ways to imagine an octopus and consuming endangered animals much like its Sea of Japan neighbors, is also where a diner may relatively easily sample horse.  Not buying it?  Want to see it offered on a menu?

Shinjuku, Tokyo- Menu (Basashi)

Hmm, you may be right.  I could have located a similar font to the others words and typed it in.  But why do that?  So that I could use a 3D printer to create the next pictured item?


よくもまあ yokumo maa (You’ve got some nerve)!  Well, basashi (馬刺し), raw horse meat (sliced like sashimi), is also known as 桜肉 sakuraniku (literally, cherry blossom meat) for its generally pink color.  It’s more commonly eaten in Kumamoto and Ooita on Kyushu island, as well as in Nagano, but if you’re just ambling about Tokyo’s izakaya (convivial bars with much food), you might be in luck; I tried the above at one in Kabukicho.  Most of what you see is edible (though I feel a botanist would be writhing in as much pain as a PETA activist), although the soy sauce was a bit camera-shy.  Although one of the popular ways to eat it is as basashi, another way is in a colder state.  (Have you ever tried a viper ice cream shake?  Whoops, wrong post)

Does a mouthful of hay sound more appetizing than horsemeat?  Do you think it should be allowed on the restaurant menu in Queens?

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11 Responses to Horse is a Meat, of Course, of Course

  1. expatlingo says:

    I’m told they make a mean horse sausage in Kyrgyzstan.

    • buildingmybento says:

      Indeed, it seems to be quite popular in the former CIS states. Though, there’s gotta be somewhere (s) in Guangdong that would have it too… tried it before?

  2. shb says:

    What you’re doing in HK, now that’s the more interesting question…?

  3. David Arthur says:

    Nah, stick to writing about food! The random, traveling tongue & stomach! … Those Quebecers!

  4. Mitzie Mee says:

    I had horse meat in Sweden by accident. They called it Hamburgerkött and it was disguised as ordinary cold cuts….Though horse sashimi sounds a little too exotic to me.

    • buildingmybento says:

      It seems young Danish chefs are part of the current food trend in the US, more specifically NYC. In Copenhagen at least, do you notice more advertisements for cooking classes or foreigners queuing to/clamoring to eat in local restaurants?
      More difficult question (I reckon)- which would be the most representative meals of Denmark? I’ve never been (East Asia has caught most of you attention, which you’ve probably noticed~), but is smorrebrod (spelling for sure incorrect) more akin appetizers or the primary course? What are desserts? Don’t want to respond all at once (or at all!), no problem.

      • Mitzie Mee says:

        In fact traditional Danish food is rather boring. Mostly just a bunch of potatoes, a slice of meat (usually pork) and a heavy gravy. A traditional dish is “Flæskesteg”, pork belly roast, which, like most other Danish dishes is a quite heavy dish.

        Though places like Noma provides an entirely different view of what Danish cuisine also has to offer.
        Smørrebrød is usually eaten at lunch but in fact, it isn’t that common to eat smørrebrød except for special occasions. A traditional Danish dessert is “Rødgrød med fløde” which is a kind of red berry pudding served with full fat cream.
        If you have further questions please don’t hesitate to ask:)

      • buildingmybento says:

        Tak, Mitzie Mee! I’m undoubtedly a food enthusiast, and have just about zero experience with Danish cuisine, so it’s nice to get the gist about it from a local. Do you think another quality that defines Danish cooking is “locavore?” As in, those in Denmark much prefer to get their produce from as close a source as possible to their residences? Have rooftop gardens started to appear? I have this impression that much of Europe (…and the world, besides the US and Persian Gulf states) do it that way, regardless of living situation. The automobile-centric society in much of my country is partially to blame, but eh, no need to discuss such banalities.

        Anyway, do you like living in Dubayy? I haven’t been since the EK terminal opened, but not much appealed to me then anyway.

  5. Mitzie Mee says:

    In Copenhagen there are some rooftop gardens, though since many families live in their own house (with a garden), rooftop gardens aren’t a common phenomenon. Though, most people prefer organic food if they can afford it.
    Dubai is a very international city and I like that big melting pot atmosphere which characterizes the city (only 20% are native Emiratis). Since most parts of the city have only existed for less than a decade, Dubai lacks some of the more cultural offerings you’ll find in other similar-sized cities around the world, but the large range of dining and entertainment options makes up for it in my opinion.

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