It was supposed to be a meet-up between old friends, but I should’ve known better. Ever since I’ve known him, his life’s mission seems to keep pushing me out of my comfort zone. Since I’m a foodie, he challenged me to eat balut. What’s balut, you may ask? Just fertilized duck egg, thank you very much.

Now, it’s not as if I have never eaten balut. When I was young, say around 4 or 5 years old, my Daddy used to buy balut then give me the yellow yolk. He’d sprinkle a bit of salt and give it to me. He’d also make me slurp the liquid inside the shell – the balut juice. He said that it would make me smarter. He’d eat the rest of the balut and I’d go my merry way. UNTIL I learned what balut was. Then I was DONE. No more please.

How fitting that I’d eat balut again during this trip to the Philippines. My Daddy passed away last month, which pretty much explains my silence on this blog.

Fast forward to the present, my friend’s challenge seemed easy enough. Order Sizzling Balut with Tofu then eat it. How bad can it be? It’ll be on a sizzling plate with tofu! I like tofu. It even arrived with some sort of gravy all over it. Yay!

Sizzling Balut with Tofu
Sizzling Balut with Tofu

Then I started cutting the balut into quarters, which led to my freak-out moment: seeing black parts, then chomping on something crunchy. Yep, FETUS. Gag reflex kicked in. When I was young, Daddy spared me the horror of eating the fetus, but this time, I had to eat everything. A challenge was a challenge. I never back down from challenges. Did I mention that I had to eat more than one balut? Uh huh!

At some point, I manned up just to get it over and done with. After all, I had a bottle or two of San Mig Light at my disposal to make it go down easily. What’s the difference between eating a chicken egg and duck egg anyway? An egg is an egg is an egg.

Now I laugh in the face of danger, in this case, balut. Would I do it again? Spare me the fetus and the answer is yes. I just can’t get it out of my head that it’s a fetus. *shudders*

My friend, you pushed me past my comfort zone yet again, but without you knowing it, you stirred up my memories of my dad. With everything that happened lately, that’s actually truly priceless.

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