Message Boards

Guidelines

  • Please be sure posts are category appropriate.
  • No off-topic or off-color postings.
  • Postings may be deleted at the discretion of HGTV Moderators.
  • No advertising is allowed.
  • Be Nice. No name calling, personal attacks or flaming.
  • Certain words will trigger moderation of the post. These words mostly cover political and religious topics, which are OFF the topics covered by HGTV.
  • For general message board help, click the tab labeled "Tools," and choose "Help" from the dropdown menu.
Full Guidelines
Go
New
Find
Notify
Tools
Reply
  
Food Taboos? Sign In/Join 
posted
I'm a student at UCLA and I am conducting research about food taboos in the U.S. I would really appreciate it if you could take a minute to answer this question:

Do food taboos exist in mainstream, core American culture? If so, what are they?

A food taboo is defined as: a very strong moral prohibition against consuming something or consuming under particular circumstances or with people in certain relationships.
 
Posts: 1 | Registered: Jun 09, 2013Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of KeepYouInStitches
posted Hide Post
Sure I'll answer...

We American meat eaters have decided that some animals should not be food. I am specifically referring to horse meat and dog meat. Any animal that we make into a pet becomes off limits in our minds for food consumption.

Many countries (or regions within countries) eat horse meat: Russia, Mexico, China, Italy, etc.

Eating dog meat is even more of a taboo to us. Just a little research brings up not only Asian countries consuming dog meat, but I also saw that dog meat butchered in front of inspectors can be sold in CANADA!!! That surprised me.

Cat meat...yep. Other countries eat domestic cats.

I have no desire to eat any of the above. But I have never starved.

This message has been edited. Last edited by: KeepYouInStitches,
 
Posts: 16466 | Location: Daingerfield, TX | Registered: Feb 07, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of Indexlady
posted Hide Post
Another thought is the Fitness as the New Morality has created pseudo-taboo foods. Fats. Sugar even in a tiny proportion. Foods imported.

The whole world has gone crazy with what we should eat or not eat, as something to judge people by.
 
Posts: 4404 | Location: In the beautiful Tennessee Valley, between the Cumberland Plateau and the Great Smoky Mountains. | Registered: Jul 12, 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
posted Hide Post
I don't think of fats and sugars as a taboo, but substances that should be consumed in moderation. I also think that the movement to use local food with as few preservatives as possible is good for people and the local economy. That being said, consuming pets--dogs and cats as well as horses are considered taboo here in the US. I just saw an email about lion burgers--I have to wonder why anyone would do such a thing?
 
Posts: 3048 | Location: Ohio | Registered: Feb 25, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of still tryin
posted Hide Post
I don't know of anyone in the U.S. that eat rats, monkeys or guniea pigs but people in other countries have no taboo against it. We certainly don't eat people.
 
Posts: 2641 | Registered: Jan 08, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of Quiltzilla
posted Hide Post
 
Posts: 6621 | Registered: Aug 22, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of Annon
posted Hide Post
.....and jello
 
Posts: 3540 | Location: Ohio | Registered: Sep 18, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of Lurah
posted Hide Post
Three things that I say are taboo at our house is any form of soybeans - because of the genetically altered problems associated with messing around with nature and plant molecuiar structure.
Also artificial sweetners are off limits in our family diet. Just skip the sweet if you must but these chemicals will be the plague of everyone else's mortality.
And the third thing is dieting. Yo-yo eating / dieting messes with your metabolism and makes a weight problem worse.
 
Posts: 2639 | Location: Midwest | Registered: Nov 29, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of lady of shallot
posted Hide Post
quote:
Do food taboos exist in mainstream, core American culture? If so, what are they?


I would say the one mainstream food taboo that does exist in American culture (ignoring personal one's chosen for one's own household) is the disparate one of not eating ANY meat.

This is not based on any religion (as many food taboos are) it is wide spread across the country, it is individually chosen, it is not culturally or socially influenced and it is very deeply held.
 
Posts: 12139 | Registered: Jun 27, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of aychihuahua
posted Hide Post
quote:
Originally posted by still tryin:
I don't know of anyone in the U.S. that eat rats, monkeys or guniea pigs but people in other countries have no taboo against it. We certainly don't eat people.


Cannibalism may or may not be humanity's oldest taboo, but when people here (and elsewhere around the world) are desperate enough they will resort to cannibalism as a means of survival: Old Jamestown, VA in the "starving time" of 1609 and the snowbound Donner Party in 1847, for example.
 
Posts: 5163 | Registered: Jul 12, 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
posted Hide Post
Well, I hope Bruin is satisfied. As soon as I saw the post, I wondered how soon the replies would devolve into a discussion of cannibalism. I suspect that was Bruin's true purpose, and we certainly took the bait.
 
Posts: 3236 | Location: Louisiana | Registered: Jan 15, 2011Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of aychihuahua
posted Hide Post
quote:
Originally posted by sms29s66:
Well, I hope Bruin is satisfied. As soon as I saw the post, I wondered how soon the replies would devolve into a discussion of cannibalism. I suspect that was Bruin's true purpose, and we certainly took the bait.


Bruin asked about food taboos, and cannibalism is probably the most extreme. (Funny, no mention of strict dietary laws among certain religions, where pork -- and/or shellfish -- or the co-mingling of dairy and meat --is taboo.)

That said, there is nothing wrong with discussing cannibalism. It is a fact of life and death in the animal kingdom since time immemorial, including us humans.
 
Posts: 5163 | Registered: Jul 12, 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
posted Hide Post
Somehow I don't find a discussion of cannibalism suitable on a forum called Food & Entertaining. Call me nitpicky, but...
 
Posts: 3236 | Location: Louisiana | Registered: Jan 15, 2011Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of aychihuahua
posted Hide Post
quote:
Originally posted by sms29s66:
Somehow I don't find a discussion of cannibalism suitable on a forum called Food & Entertaining. Call me nitpicky, but...


Feel free to refrain from the discussion.
 
Posts: 5163 | Registered: Jul 12, 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of Charming
posted Hide Post
quote:
Originally posted by sms29s66:
Somehow I don't find a discussion of cannibalism suitable on a forum called Food & Entertaining. Call me nitpicky, but...


It is not as if we have never gone off topic here and we are not discussing the best way to serve Aunt Bertha.

I think since our new friend has not been back since posting and followed up on the topic it is probably a hit and run posting by someone out for a laugh.

I think our regulars did a great job of staying on topic and not making a joke out of the topic.

Kitty stew?
 
Posts: 3397 | Location: Coastal SC | Registered: Jan 10, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of aychihuahua
posted Hide Post
I can think of a worse food taboo than cannibalism, but will refrain from offending the squeamish. (So, bite me Smile)
 
Posts: 5163 | Registered: Jul 12, 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
posted Hide Post
Charming, I think you hit the nail on the head. Bruin was never asking a real question. That was my point. Ayichi, you've surely seen enough of my posts to realize that I am not squeamish. I do, however, object (mildly) to being played as a fool which is what I suspect is going on here. Smile

This message has been edited. Last edited by: sms29s66,
 
Posts: 3236 | Location: Louisiana | Registered: Jan 15, 2011Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of aychihuahua
posted Hide Post
quote:
Originally posted by sms29s66:
Charming, I think you hit the nail on the head. Bruin was never asking a real question. That was my point. Ayichi, you've surely seen enough of my posts to realize that I am not squeamish. I do, however, object (mildly) to being played as a fool which is what I suspect is going on here. Smile


So what if that was Bruin's game? If you feel like you've been played a fool, I am sorry to hear that. No one can make you feel like a fool, if you don't let them. I certainly don't feel that way.

Now, who remembers the great Twilight Zone episode "To Serve Man"?
 
Posts: 5163 | Registered: Jul 12, 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of Charming
posted Hide Post
quote:
Originally posted by aychihuahua
Now, who remembers the great Twilight Zone episode "To Serve Man"?


A classic!
 
Posts: 3397 | Location: Coastal SC | Registered: Jan 10, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
posted Hide Post
Aychi, since all I did was question Bruin's "motives" and did not actually discuss his "topic", I don't personally feel like a fool. I do think that his purpose was to make ALL of us look foolish which is what I meant when I used the pronoun "I". Perhaps I should have said "we" but then "we'd" in the weeds discussing the royal plural.

And, yes, I remember that great TZ episode.
 
Posts: 3236 | Location: Louisiana | Registered: Jan 15, 2011Reply With QuoteReport This Post
posted Hide Post
And as my daughter reminds me, I am a Cajun and
"we" eat anything! By the way, one of my cousins' husband is featured on the Cooking Channel Freshman Class. He's the one who is also a taxidermist!!!
 
Posts: 3236 | Location: Louisiana | Registered: Jan 15, 2011Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of zone9alady
posted Hide Post
I guess I will join in on the topic since the "we eat anything" statement was brought up. Being born and raised in Louisiana that phrase certainly does include me. I've eaten alligator, squirrel, dove, rabbit, deer, crawfish, turtle, nutria, snake and bear. But surprisingly not the raccoon, armadillo, opossum and roadkill (LOL) that most people think we eat. I guess that is more the fare for Mississippi and Arkansas. JK!

Who cares if the original poster is no where to be found, this thread is taking on a life of it's own. I was going to say the biggest taboo is dog, horse and cat, but as we all know other countries have no problem eating them. Horse is a delicacy in some areas in Spain. And of course....insects. It's going to take awhile before we get mainstream America to drive up to Mc'Crickets!

This message has been edited. Last edited by: zone9alady,


Whether You Think You Can Or You Think You Can't..... You're Right - Henry Ford
 
Posts: 7276 | Location: Central Florida | Registered: Feb 12, 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of KeepYouInStitches
posted Hide Post
I've eaten raccoon! And several others zone9alady mentioned.
If I ever get the chance, I will try alligator and snake. I've never had nutria but am not opposed to it.

No thanks to possum (I have been told that it is very greasy even when served with sweet potatoes), armadillo (I have heard/read that it carries leprosy-yuck), and road kill (obvious reasons!). Wink
 
Posts: 16466 | Location: Daingerfield, TX | Registered: Feb 07, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of zone9alady
posted Hide Post
quote:
Originally posted by Annon:
.....and jello


LOL...I can't stand it either! Yuck


Whether You Think You Can Or You Think You Can't..... You're Right - Henry Ford
 
Posts: 7276 | Location: Central Florida | Registered: Feb 12, 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of zone9alady
posted Hide Post
Sherry, what was the raccoon like? How was it cooked?
Let me guess..it tasted like chicken? Big Grin

Oh I forgot to mention...Deep Fried Frog-legs!
MMMMM-MM!


Whether You Think You Can Or You Think You Can't..... You're Right - Henry Ford
 
Posts: 7276 | Location: Central Florida | Registered: Feb 12, 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of KeepYouInStitches
posted Hide Post
BBQ'd. Tasted like meat. Wink It's red meat. No...LOL...not chicken.
 
Posts: 16466 | Location: Daingerfield, TX | Registered: Feb 07, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of Charming
posted Hide Post
I remember going to a funeral up in Michigan years ago. There was a meal on the grounds sort of thing following the service. Everyone around had brought in food. My sister took me aside and whispered - don't eat the "beef" dishes. Wink Neither of us care for deer, squirrel, rabbit, etc.

DH was working up in CT a few years back and they went out to this super popular restaurant that served moose, deer, rabbit, squirrel, etc. I always called it Road Kill Café.

This message has been edited. Last edited by: Charming,
 
Posts: 3397 | Location: Coastal SC | Registered: Jan 10, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
posted Hide Post
I've never tasted moose, but I certainly like venison. I have to admit that rabbit and squirrel are not among my favorites, though.
 
Posts: 3236 | Location: Louisiana | Registered: Jan 15, 2011Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of lady of shallot
posted Hide Post
Some of the most interesting reading I have done is the journals of Lewis and Clark. There were many times they were starving (to say nothing of the poor indians they encountered)

They did eat dog yet had their own favorite dog along (forget which one . . . Clark maybe)
 
Posts: 12139 | Registered: Jun 27, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of aychihuahua
posted Hide Post
quote:
Originally posted by zone9alady:
And of course....insects. It's going to take awhile before we get mainstream America to drive up to Mc'Crickets!


LOL!!! That is where I draw the line! I'll go vegan before I do bugs.
 
Posts: 5163 | Registered: Jul 12, 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of zone9alady
posted Hide Post
LOL! I've always said that I would try any cuisine or food if it tasted good. I'm not going to eat something if it taste bad just to say I've tried it. Yuck


Whether You Think You Can Or You Think You Can't..... You're Right - Henry Ford
 
Posts: 7276 | Location: Central Florida | Registered: Feb 12, 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
posted Hide Post
zone, how will you know if it tastes good or bad without at least trying it? As a child, I took one look at strawberry shortcake and turned my nose up at it without tasting it. Same thing for some strange looking concoction at school that I later discovered was tuna salad which I LOVE!!!!

This message has been edited. Last edited by: sms29s66,
 
Posts: 3236 | Location: Louisiana | Registered: Jan 15, 2011Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of zone9alady
posted Hide Post
I was thinking about that travel channel show Bizzare Foods with Andrew Zimmern. He's constantly eating things that are known to be hard to palate. I don't think I would try something if they told me it tasted like fermented dead fish or rotten eggs.

When I was young I wouldn't try raw oysters, thought they were gross, until my friends father showed me how to eat them with crackers, lemon and sauce...now I love them.

This message has been edited. Last edited by: zone9alady,


Whether You Think You Can Or You Think You Can't..... You're Right - Henry Ford
 
Posts: 7276 | Location: Central Florida | Registered: Feb 12, 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
posted Hide Post
I can certainly understand the "ick" factor. I can't see myself trying fried grasshoppers no matter what they MIGHT taste like. And some associations just won't go away. Years ago, I saw one of those bizarre food shows shot in Japan and the entree was alive and trying to crawl off the plate. That was enough for me. Even if that was not sushi and most sushi is cooked, I have this thing in my mind--so when we eat Japanese, I steer clear of the sushi list.
 
Posts: 3236 | Location: Louisiana | Registered: Jan 15, 2011Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of aychihuahua
posted Hide Post
I love sushi!! And, sashimi. But, I am very picky about the venue.
 
Posts: 5163 | Registered: Jul 12, 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of KeepYouInStitches
posted Hide Post
Oh yuck. I don't eat rare or raw meats.
I don't eat organs.
I don't eat anything with raw eggs in it.
 
Posts: 16466 | Location: Daingerfield, TX | Registered: Feb 07, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of aychihuahua
posted Hide Post
IKWYM, KYIS.

I feel the same way (meaning a big YUCK factor) for creamed chipped beef, ambrosia with marshmallows and mayo and any bland white cream gravy, like the kind on chicken fried steak or chicken and dumplin's. Nosiree, not for me.
 
Posts: 5163 | Registered: Jul 12, 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of Charming
posted Hide Post
Gravy on chicken and dumplings? I don't think I would like that either.

I also don't like marshmallows in much of anything.
 
Posts: 3397 | Location: Coastal SC | Registered: Jan 10, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of zone9alady
posted Hide Post
quote:
Originally posted by Charming:
..............I also don't like marshmallows in much of anything.


Nope, no marshmallows here either. I don't even like the white stuff in Oreos.


Whether You Think You Can Or You Think You Can't..... You're Right - Henry Ford
 
Posts: 7276 | Location: Central Florida | Registered: Feb 12, 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of Wavy
posted Hide Post
quote:
Nope, no marshmallows here either. I don't even like the white stuff in Oreos.

quote:
guess I will join in on the topic since the "we eat anything" statement was brought up. Being born and raised in Louisiana that phrase certainly does include me. I've eaten alligator, squirrel, dove, rabbit, deer, crawfish, turtle, nutria, snake and bear. But surprisingly not the raccoon, armadillo, opossum and roadkill (LOL) that most people think we eat. I guess that is more the fare for Mississippi and Arkansas. JK!

OMG, that is too funny. I have never eaten any of those 'animals' above-mentioned..... Along with cornbeef and pastrami, TONGUE (COW'S) is also a delicacy. I would only eat Tongue if you DON'T TELL ME WHAT IT IS. If you ask me if I want Tongue, my answer will always be EEEWWWW, NOOOO, although it tastes a lot like corned beef, I won't eat it because of the visual picture of it. I have never cooked pork products in my house for religious reasons. I have eaten pork in Chinese food however!
I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE, LOVE MARSHMALLOWS!!!!!


SPRING HAS F I N A L L Y SPRUNG!!!!!
 
Posts: 453 | Location: "The Garden State" ~ N.J. | Registered: Jul 13, 2012Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of Indexlady
posted Hide Post
quote:
before I do bugs.

Somewhere in New Orleans is a bug museum, which we visited. And in the back, they serve bugs. And, I tried 3 different kinds. You'd never know you were eating bugs. They just add crunch.

Ooops, there's an antenna between your teeth. Oh, wait. My bad. It's a leg.....

But seriously, no flavor that we could detect. Just crunch.

I'm sure it was just the way they were prepared.
 
Posts: 4404 | Location: In the beautiful Tennessee Valley, between the Cumberland Plateau and the Great Smoky Mountains. | Registered: Jul 12, 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of zone9alady
posted Hide Post
LOL Wavy...I've eaten cow's tongue, it was cut up in chucks and smothered down with green beans and potatoes. I just thought is was chunks of beef until I saw the taste buds.

IndexLady, Haven't been to that museum yet, I guess I would have had to try the bugs too. I've been told some of those huge ants are sweet like candy. Smile


Whether You Think You Can Or You Think You Can't..... You're Right - Henry Ford
 
Posts: 7276 | Location: Central Florida | Registered: Feb 12, 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of Spanish Revival
posted Hide Post
The other day I saw a restaurant that served muskrat... now how can that taste so good that you'd actually ask for it in a restaurant? "Hey honey, lets go out tonight, I've got a hankering for some Muskrat and I don't have any in the freezer." Eww.
 
Posts: 908 | Location: Florida | Registered: Aug 22, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of conrad
posted Hide Post
Personally I have only cleaned and eaten my own fresh caught fish. As a child, I watched chickens, ducks, and rabbits butchered, and for a while I would not eat chicken because of the scent memory of entrails and singed feathers.

I am thinking many of us would tend to be more vegetarian, if we had to always personally butcher and prepare our own meat for cooking.
 
Posts: 9429 | Location: Plains & Mountains | Registered: Jun 08, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of CA Lori
posted Hide Post
About 30 years ago, I dined at an upscale restaurant in our area (Vic Stewarts), and they had Ostrich on the menu. I don't remember what it tasted like, but I do remember liking it.

I've also enjoyed Frog's Legs as well as Sand Dabs. About the Sand Dabs, the first time I had them, they were boneless and delicious; the second time, I couldn't eat them because of all the bones!
 
Posts: 5881 | Location: Calif. | Registered: Sep 21, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of KeepYouInStitches
posted Hide Post
Indexlady LOL An ex-marine friend said that during survival training he learned real quick that in order for him to eat bugs he had to pull the legs off or they tickled going down.
 
Posts: 16466 | Location: Daingerfield, TX | Registered: Feb 07, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of Spanish Revival
posted Hide Post
I've had Ostrich too, it's a red, lean meat.
 
Posts: 908 | Location: Florida | Registered: Aug 22, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of Florida Farm Girl
posted Hide Post
What a hoot this is! I've eaten a lot of the things mentioned, too. And, yes, KYIS, possum is very greasy. Mama always cooked it separately to cook off the fat and then used just the lean with the sweet potatoes. I still didn't like it, though. Now the raccoon, she'd cook in the pressure cooker and then make a hash of it with onions and lots of black pepper. It was good.


www.floridafarmgirlsworld.blogspot.com


Life isn't about how to survive the storm, but how to dance in the rain.
 
Posts: 6207 | Location: Northwest Florida | Registered: Dec 12, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of zone9alady
posted Hide Post
Thanks to the no=show OP we have quite an interesting thread! Maybe he/she is just lurking taking notes.

I just remembered I had a Bison steak when we went to the Grand Canyon last fall...it was delish!

CALori, I heard Ostrich was good too...have to try it!


Whether You Think You Can Or You Think You Can't..... You're Right - Henry Ford
 
Posts: 7276 | Location: Central Florida | Registered: Feb 12, 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of conrad
posted Hide Post
Bison meat is very commonly sold here. Very lean, and grass fed, not corn fattened in the feed lot.
 
Posts: 9429 | Location: Plains & Mountains | Registered: Jun 08, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
  Powered by Social Strata  
 

HGTV.com    HGTV Message Boards  Hop To Forum Categories  At Home  Hop To Forums  Food & Entertaining    Food Taboos?