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Old 07-30-2007, 12:26 AM   #1
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Pigs feet, chicken feet, offal and the like

I was reading posts on another forum and so many people stated that they would rather die than eat any of those.
That made me wonder how everybody here feels about these?
I'm also curious what happens with those parts of the animals in the US?
Couldn't find chicken feet anywhere except Chinatown.
Where I come from every bit of an animal is used. Nothing goes to waste.
So is it a sign of wealth that ppl here do not want to eat those parts?

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Old 07-30-2007, 12:43 AM   #2
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offal....offal is good!!!!!!!
trotters...mmmm YUMMMMM
chicken feet..well i never tasted those. guess i never thought to, doesn't mean i won't :)
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Old 07-30-2007, 01:54 AM   #3
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i'm guessing you haven't been in california long, mit.

i wouldn't say it was a sign of wealth, necessarily, that the majority of americans don't eat "those" parts.

i would think it more a function of a society that has little time to enjoy all of the parts of every animal, especially the parts that require long cooking times to render their flavor and/or make them edible. i'd add that the more "ethnic" a community here in the u.s, be it asian, or eastern or western european, african/caribbean, or south american, or what have you, the more likely you are to find dishes using these parts.

the people from the other site you've mentioned are either not very informed, or possibly are english , so ignore them and spend more time here...
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Old 07-30-2007, 02:18 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by buckytom
i'm guessing you haven't been in california long, mit.

i wouldn't say it was a sign of wealth, necessarily, that the majority of americans don't eat "those" parts.

i would think it more a function of a society that has little time to enjoy all of the parts of every animal, especially the parts that require long cooking times to render their flavor and/or make them edible. i'd add that the more "ethnic" a community here in the u.s, be it asian, or eastern or western european, african/caribbean, or south american, or what have you, the more likely you are to find dishes using these parts.

the people from the other site you've mentioned are either not very informed, or possibly are english , so ignore them and spend more time here...
You're funny Tom!
I've been living here plenty long, 18 years now...geez, time flies when you're having fun...
I understand what you are saying about a fast paced society. But I don't think that is the reason.
Granted, I grew up in a different society. But my parents, even my grandparents worked their behinds off, long hours etc, and yet everything was made from scratch and canned at home etc etc.
I did the same raising 3 kids.
So no, don't think it's the "being too busy to take the time" thing.
Gosh, I've even heard a sweet American girl say about foie gras (AKA goose liver) wheeeeeeeew it's discusting! Go figure...
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Old 07-30-2007, 02:41 AM   #5
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believe me, that sweet american girl may have actually been just from sucralose.

did you, your parents, grandparents, etc, take time out for entertainment on a weekly or monthly (or daily, as in tv) basis; for daily cultural and educational, and sporting pursuits; to think about the amount of time spent preparing those foods, v.s. what else they could be doing while still providing a good and healthy meal for thier loved ones?

were they (and you) in a traditional relationship? ya know, mom as house slave, dad as work slave?

being american isn't as plastic or shallow as i originally joked about. it just slightly more self centered than much of the world to be able to understand. we're just trying to drive a wedge of a little personal happiness in what otherwise IS a form of slavery. if things like feet and liver go by the way side, then i hope someone is left to remind us of these "delicacies".

just wait a few generations, you'll see.
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Old 07-30-2007, 05:16 AM   #6
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I've tried chicken feet and many types of offal, but I don't like how a lot of it tastes. The two that I do love are foie gras and sweetbreads.
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Old 07-30-2007, 07:51 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mitmondol
I was reading posts on another forum and so many people stated that they would rather die than eat any of those.
That made me wonder how everybody here feels about these?
I'm also curious what happens with those parts of the animals in the US?
Couldn't find chicken feet anywhere except Chinatown.
Where I come from every bit of an animal is used. Nothing goes to waste.
So is it a sign of wealth that ppl here do not want to eat those parts?
Perhaps-
The situation you describe is a result of the food industry's shift to an emphasis on 'value added foods'. The industry looks to increase their profit margins by shifting away from the sale of individual ingredients towards combining the ingredients and selling them for a higher markup.

During good times (like when a plumber can extort $50+ an hour and a receptionist expects to make $500+ per week) many people feel their time is too valuable to bother with making meals from scratch.

The increasing prevalence of big box stores, decline of specialty stores, replacement of small farmers with food factories and lack of exposure on the part of increasing numbers of Americans to the sources of their food also contribute.

In my lifetime I've seen the most common form of chicken go from something easily obtainable from a live market, to whole chicken, to chicken parts and soup bones go from something a butcher would give to his regular customers to something that's sold by the pound.

In the last few decades the butcher has gone the same way as the baker and candlestick maker.

On a brighter note, trichinosis seems to have declined in the US.
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Old 07-30-2007, 08:01 AM   #8
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I am amazed at just how much we have to pay for sweetbreads/lambs brains now that they are ' trendy'. Lamb shanks fit into that category also.
I love all offal. The only thing I wont eat are mountain oysters but that is because they are removed by mouth here and I sure dont want to eat something that spent a little time in anothers oral cavity. Yucko!
I have eaten chicken feet and coxscombs in a Chinese restaurant, ate a lot of stuffed heart and tripe when young, love pickled pork trotters, et al.

Now, how many of you have had lambs tails? Just throw the freshly cut tails onto a chicken wire frame over embers, fleece still on and wait until they are charred. Peel off fleece and eat lovely sweet fatty tail meat. Heaven. Used to coincide with Guy Fawkes day years ago so we had fires going anyways! lol. Nowadays, lambs start arriving in June for the export market. Its just not right.
And salsicce di sangue..blood sausages. With a salad of raddichio and some wee boiled potatos...bliss.
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Old 07-30-2007, 08:34 AM   #9
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I eat pig's feet but only in a jar and pickled. I love them. Years ago my mother made the best chicken broth in the world. She used a whole chicken and lots of necks, backs and feet. The feet have a tremendous amount of flavor because they're cartiledge and skin. I don't think anyone actually eats the feet. There is no flesh there. I can only get them in Asian markets because Asians make their soup with chicken feet too.
I had forgotten all about the cock's combs until I read Lynan's post. I do remember my mother throwing a few of those into the soup pot, but I never ate one.
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Old 07-30-2007, 09:18 AM   #10
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It's simple....
When home butchering and raising of livestock and poultry became
uncommon, so did exposure.

Most people don't ever SEE chicken feet or offal, unless they run
across some in the grocery store. So of course they aren't going
to cook and eat them.

When the chickens met their end on the stump in the yard, and when
Bessie the cow got butchered by Tom the Abbatoir down the road,
people ate more "offal", because it was cheap and supplied.

Last time I saw "offal" regularly on the table was when I was a kid
and spent summers on the family farm with my grandparents....
who still raised their own livestock.
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