Most of us might think trying French escargot (snails) or eating alligator meat (I had it in Florida!) is out of the ordinary. But what about rat?
Apparently it’s a hit in Moscow right now. A report from the guardian.com states that rat burgers (!!) are the current craze in Russia’s great capital.
OK, let me rephrase that – “nutria burgers” are a hit. ‘Nutria’ is the name of the rodent that’s being used to make the meat patties in these reportedly delicious dinners.
It all makes it sound kind of nutritious, doesn’t it?
(Chef Philippe Parola prepares a nutria for eating.)
Serving burgers made of river rat is the brainchild of 35-year-old chef and restaurateur Takhir Kholikberdiev, who recently opened Krasnodar Bistro, a trendy restaurant in the center of Moscow that’s focusing on serving “high-quality local ingredients”.
For its part, the nutria is a large rodent with orange teeth, also known as coypu or river rat, and it’s found in southern Russia, as well as other places around the world.
Talking about his new food source, Kholikberdiev is quoted by The Guardian as saying, “It’s a really clean animal; not only is it a herbivore but it washes all its food before it eats. And it’s very high in omega-3 acids. A lot of doctors and dietitians recommend it.”
According to National Geographic, at one time the nutria lived only in South America, but they have been domesticated for their fur, and shipped around the globe.
And apparently, they are prone to escaping their fur farms, and establishing large new, wild colonies wherever they’ve been transplanted. And being turned into burgers.
Curious? Head to Louisiana where they’ve literally taken over, get yourself some meat and try this Nutria Spaghetti Casserole (scroll down) for yourself.