Friday, July 13, 2007

Shaggy dog story

Miss Deadline puzzles over a shopping list she found, including such things as

1. Rice
2. Beans drain
3. Ginger
4. Onion
5. Two Canines.
6. Fennen Spods (?)
7. Chopped.

Korean she asks? It's a simple list but enough for healthy and nutritious meal such as a stew or soup. The trick when cooking dog is, of course, to marinade the meat and let is simmer for as long as possible. Otherwise you'll get something a bit tough and stringy: think of venison.

It sounds to me as if with that list you could make a basic version of Bosintang, a sort of soup which sounds less disgusting than Kimchi to me. However, it's too simple for something like Stewed Dog wedding style.

There are also African dog recipes in which you need to beat the dog to death with sticks in order to shift the adipose tissue properly. I don't recommend this to UK based readers as the noise will doubtless annoy your neighbours. In any case, cat apparently tastes better. If you want recipes for dog, cat, as well as things like panda and other endangered species, I reccomment to you the splendind Decadent Cookbook.

Now some of you might complain that eating dog is barbaric (unlike eating a more intelligent animal such as a pig). Leaving aside that the Ancient Greeks and China's 4000-year-old civilisation both ate dog, canine flesh enjoyed a brief vogue in Paris as the Belle Epoque came to an end. (Oh alright, it was the Franco-Prussian war and they'd run out of food).

Still, one Englishman who was present, Henry Labouchere, recorded his impression of eating dog, mouse and elephant among other things (and sensibly, he was more worried about running out of wine) in his Diary of the Besieged Resident in Paris.

On December 15, 1870 he wrote:

On the Rue Blanche there is a butcher who sells dogs, cats, and rats. He has many customers, but it is amusing to see them sneak into the shop after carefully looking round to make sure that none of their acquaintances are near. A prejudice has arisen against rats, because the doctors say that their flesh is full of trichinae. I own for my part I have a guilty feeling when I eat dog, the friend of man. I had a slice of a spaniel the other day, it was by no means bad, something like lamb, but I felt like a cannibal. Epicures in dog flesh tell me that poodle is by far the best, and recommend me to avoid bull dog, which is coarse and tasteless.

I really think that dogs have some means of communicating with each other, and have discovered that their old friends want to devour them. The humblest of street curs growls when anyone looks at him.
Figaro has a story that a man was followed for a mile by a party of dogs barking fiercely at his heels. He could not understand to what their attentions were due, until he remembered that he had eaten a rat for his breakfast. The friend of another journalist, who ate a dog called Fox, says that whenever anyone calls out "Fox" he feels an irresistible impulse which forces him to jump up.

The whole thing is here.

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