Bizarre Foods Activity
Inspired by Andrew Zimmer
If you are looking for a fun party concept, for adults and children a like, I highly suggest the bizarre foods theme. You can take it in so many different directions: bizarre ice cream, bizarre fruits, bizarre vegetables, bizarre processed foods, etc… the list seems endless.
Let’s take a minute and I will walk you through just one of the bizarre foods classes I have had the pleasure of hosting.
I took a trip to my local Asian market. A place that is filled with fresh produce, strange creatures, and amazing fish flavored snacks. If you are looking for bizarre this place is right up most American’s Alley. I filled my cart full of items I was familiar with, but had not yet had the pleasure of preparing myself. This is a win/win for my students and me, as I am a self taught chef.
Class Set up
Before class began we laid our bounty on the table. Displaying items for the kids to walk around, touch, and explore while we waited for everyone to arrive.
We passed each bizarre food around and discussed where it came from, how it is prepared, and allowed the children to ask questions.
Some of the items were familiar like sugar. Sugar in it's raw cane form is bizarre to many.
Taro root and Oroblanco
We sliced and fried taro root, a native of Southeast Asia and India, a food staple in places like Hawaii and the Caribbean .We peeled and divided up an oroblanco. An oroblanco is a sweet seedless citrus hybrid fruit similar to grapefruit.
The Durian, also known as jack fruit, looks like a dinosaur egg and when the kids found out that it was actually a smelly fruit, their little minds were blown.
The quail eggs were a favorite. They are cute, tiny, and the kids were impressed with the fact that they tasted just like any egg, but better because of their size!
Dried fish is a huge part of Asian food cultures and I was proud that every kid was brave enough to take a nibble.
The most bizarre food on the table that day was balut. We explored this food first by cracking open the fetal duck egg and taking a look at it in its raw form. This was a science class for sure. So many questions came from this one food. Why would someone eat this? Where does this come from? What is that sac
Then we cooked the egg and the questions just came pouring on in.
Questions are how we learn! Inspiring people to ask questions and learn helps us evolve and grow. Even if the question is, “What is a Twinkie?”
This activity is sure to impress and will be remember by all involved!
Tin Can ICe Cream
Ice cream is such a simple and delicious treat that many of us take for granted. We pop into our local shops, reach into the freezer, and voilà… ICE CREAM! Well that is good and all, but making ice cream made the old fashion way tastes so much sweeter. It also happens to be the perfect activity for birthday parties, summer BBQs, and camps.
You start with your favorite Ice cream recipe. I have included a simple recipe that uses only four ingredients.
2 cups heavy whipping cream
½ cup sugar
1 vanilla bean scraped
Pinch of salt
Rock salt or ice cream salt
4 large can 12 small cans
Once your mixture is ready you will need to cool it. Submerge the pot into a large ice bath. Once the mixture has cooled you may either place in the refrigerator for later or start the freezing process.
Then place three of the 4oz containers on top of the ice. Next fill the container to the top with the same ratio of salt/ice mixture . Seal the tin with a rubber mallet, rock, or whatever you use to seal a paint can. If it is a coffee can I suggest duct taping the lid to prevent leaks.
The can will start to collect frost on the outside and the ice inside will begin to melt. You may need to drain the cans and add more salt ice mixture. It took our crew approximately 15 min to 20 min for a soft serve dish of awesomeness to be created.
I hope you have as much fun with this process as we did!
Jessica Lim is the founder of Hound 47 LLC, an event management company specializing in culinary education and unique private catering. She has been part of the restaurant industry since 1992, working her way through a variety of culinary venues. She found her passion for education while teaching her own four children to cook. Always looking for a way to spend more time with her little ones inspired her to start her own business. In 2016 she began teaching kids to cook professionally and doing what she does best, “Throwing Parties.” She considers herself a dreamer with a bottomless well to pull from, and feels most comfortable in life when her plate is overflowing. Her lifetime goal is to open a unique country event space incorporating all of her passions: food, theatre, education, and wide open views.