The dark of balut

Try googling balut and you will find balut in the list of the most bizarre or repulsive food from around the world. It’s easy to fall for a duck dish (i.e., Peking duck, duck confit), but it seems like a challenge to try or at least look at a shelled balut.  Eating balut (fertlized duck egg common in the Asian region) is an acquired taste. Once  you realize that the odd-looking thing can be pleasant after all, you can congratulate yourself for being a foodista in the truest sense of the word.

Balut-making is an industry that has been passed along from generation to generation in the town of Pateros in the province of Rizal.

The popularity of nocturnal balut on the streets stems from the belief of its potent amative effect. It’s been around long before the advent of Viagra. A legion of believers claim to be indomitable after devouring one or two embryos. True or not, here are some quick nutritional facts about balut: balut is loaded with high-quality nutrients and micronutrients (vitamins A, D, B6 and B12, thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, folate, calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, zinc and iron). The nutritional content is higher than that of a chicken egg. A duck egg contains more chlolesterol than a chicken egg, however. Some word of caution, be careful not to eat the white part because it was found to be high in uric acid content (source:

Others prefer balut sa puti (duck egg incubated for 16-17), which has a smaller and less-feathery sisiw (embryo), to one-day-old balut.

I’m an occasional balut eater. I like it straight from the shell. Making a rare appearance on the dinner table is my balut a la pobre. All the goodness of balut enhanced with garlic and butter! Here’s how to do it: 1.) shell balut and set the juice aside, 2.)  chop some garlic and brown half of it and set aside, 3.) sauté balut in enough olive oil and add in uncooked chopped garlic, balut juice and butter, 4.) season with salt and pepper, and 5.) plate and sprinkle browned garlic over the balut.

Love it or hate it.

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