Don’t Eat the Stinky Shark!
I just got back from Iceland, cooking for their annual Food and Fun event.
Apparently the country is no longer bankrupt. In fact, it seemed to be rather bustling. And, as it turns out, Iceland is green and Greenland is ice. The theory is that the Vikings figured by calling it Iceland they would be less prone to being conquered.
Anyway, this shark dish was awful! A group of a dozen chefs from around the world were eating lunch at the Three Jackets when we were asked if we wanted to try the local specialty, stinky shark. Most sharks, you see, urinate through their skin. Some culinary genius figured out that if you were to hang the shark for six months it would putrefy, making the urine more pronounced. Yum. Luckily for the chefs, the shark was served with a clear schnapps know in Iceland as brennivin or ‘black death’. Unluckily for me, I don’t drink. So while they were frantically gulping down the antidote, I was left there to chew and swallow.
To illustrate just how offensive the flavor of this chewy shark is, we put some out on the sidewalk for our host’s dog to evaluate. Think for a minute about what a dog is willing to eat. For the first time in my life I actually saw a dog spit something halfway across a street.
While in Iceland, we also got to sample sashimi minke whale (mild) and puffin (much like duck). Unfortunately we didn’t get a chance to try the ‘rotted skate wing’ since they only eat it once a year, on December 23rd. Darn, maybe next year.