Tuesday, April 15, 2008

A Taste of the Arctic

This afternoon we were treated to some local delicacies ... muktuk, whale meat, whale tail and caribou. Lewis Brower (the BASC station manager, pictured below) brought in a plate of these treats for us to try. The photos below show the four samplings we were able to enjoy.

The first was muktuk (shown in photo below). This is the skin of the whale and the blubber immediately underneath. It had a distinct fishy flavor, but not too strong, and was very oily. The texture was chewy.

The second was whale tail. This is like muktuk, but specifically from the tail portion of the whale. Very similar flavor to muktuk, but a different texture ... more chewy than muktuk.

The third was whale meat. This was my personal favorite. It had a sweet, fishy taste and was very tender - almost melting in your mouth. The meat was fibrous - more so than I would have suspected (but then again, whales are mammals!). Any fans of sushi would really enjoy this, I think.

All of the whale was from a bowhead whale.

The final delicacy was caribou. You could definitely tell this was a land mammal, with a bit of a gamey flavor (but not nearly as "gamey" as I would have guessed). It too was very tender. And yes, this is raw, in case you were wondering.

The plate was empty by the time we finished. So far, Lewis has avoided taunting us with the really exotic fare (specifically, fermented walrus), which he assures us is an acquired taste.

No comments: