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3 Foods That Can Kill You in Minutes

  

By Terrence Aym     November 04, 2010   Helium.com

Most people who dine out want a nice place to eat offering tasty food and good ambiance. But some seek adventure. And what better adventure than flirting with a meal that can kill you with your very next bite? 

Here are three of the deadliest dishes on Earth. There are other deadly dishes, but these (for some ungodly reason) are the most popular.

 

1. Fugu (Poisonous pufferfish)

Several years ago an upscale Japanese restaurant opened its doors in Manhattan. Less than a month later it was out of business. Why? New York health inspectors discovered that the restaurant offered fugu on its menu. The astonished authorities ordered the restaurant closed immediately. They also considered criminal charges, but later that idea was dropped.  

Fugu (translated as river pig) --the Japanese word for the deadly pufferfish--has enough nerve poison in it to kill a human in seconds. In Japan, the preparation is strictly controlled. Chefs licensed to prepare the deadly dish must undergo intensive training. Parts of the fish contain the neurotoxin tetrodotoxin. One drop of the clear, tasteless liquid is enough to kill almost instantly.

Even with all the precautions at least several deaths a year from the pufferfish are reported in Japan. Those who dine on this deadly delight swear fugu's liver is the most delectable part"but it's also the most lethal. During 1984--after Japanese businessmen were dropping dead at company luncheons almost every other week--authorities banned the preparation and sale of the liver.  

It's claimed that some master fugu chefs purposefully allow a tiny amount of the toxin to remain in the fish's flesh to cause a tingling sensation on the diner's tongue. Perhaps that might not be a good idea. The mere hint that one has been lethally poisoned might cause some to suffer a fatal heart attack. 

Truly a dish to die for.

 

2. Casu Marzu (Live maggot cheese)  

Planning a trip to northern Italy? You might want to avoid this dish if you see it on the menu for it's made from a sheep milk cheese that's been liberally treated with Piophila casei.  

A delectable Italian herb? No, it's the "cheese fly." The fly lays thousands of eggs in the cheese and the result is a maggot-infested, decomposing mess. The fly's writhing, translucent maggots can pop upwards as high as half a foot into the air.  

Some of the finer restaurants that still stubbornly serve the "treat" provide the diner with a pair of goggles to protect the eyes. Yes, it is served in some fine restaurants. And yes, the maggots are served alive--once they die the cheese quickly becomes more toxic. 

The cheese is so acidic it burns the mouth--the result of the rotting cheese having been drenched with hundreds of maggots' digestive juices. 

The wriggling larvae are not digested by the body, but survive the human digestive tract long enough to breed. The aggressive and hungry hatching maggots attempt to eat through the intestinal walls causing intense pain, violent vomiting, bloody stools and even death.  

Some--but not all--people prefer to brush off the crawling maggots before enjoying the delicacy. 

Those that are rushed to hospitals usually pull through.

Usually.

3. Sannakji (Live baby octopus)  

Octopus is ubiquitous across Asia. An especially treasured dish is baby octopus. Considered a delicacy, many Japanese and Koreans will serve baby octopus as a special treat to honored guests who come to dinner. In Korea, "sannakji" is baby octopi served live. 

At the dining table the chef wields a large cleaver honed to a razor edge and tenderly chops the living tentacles into bite-sized pieces. The violently squirming appendages are then carefully seasoned with a light sprinkling of fragrant sesame oil and presented to hungry diners immediately. 

Ever have a parent tell you not to play with your food when you were a child? With this dish you have to fight with your food.The tentacles fight back you as you try to eat them. Pieces will crawl up your chopsticks, wrap themselves stubbornly around them, and try to escape from your mouth. They'll grab onto your nose, lips, teeth, gums, tongue--even the roof of your mouth--in a desperate attempt not to go down your throat. All of that is considered part of the enjoyable experience. 

When you finally get the rubbery, writhing, squirming bits down your throat, make sure you've chewed them sufficiently; if you haven't they might stubbornly lodge themselves there and then you have a problem. A significant number of people nearly choke to death on this living dish virtually every day. Some find they've taken too big a "bite" and the tentacles exact revenge by clogging up the diner's throat and cutting off the air supply. 

Incidents have occurred where heroic waitstaff ram long chopsticks down gagging, bug-eyed patrons' throats trying to free up the air passage before their customer dies right at the table. 

Sadly, dozens find sannakji is their last meal.  

People pay for this?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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