Do you ever consider the ”ingenuity” and resourcefulness you can practice by engaging in ”nose-to-tail” eating? What old recipes or food traditions around eating animals does your family share?

Before reading this article on, I didn’t know there was a term for what my mom’s family does on a weekly basis at their table. ”Nose-to-tail.” Finally, I have a term I can use when describing my family’s odd tradition of, after a meal of hunted bird, putting the bird’s head on a fork, sticking it in an empty wine bottle and swiveling it around. Whomever the beak settles on must eat the head.

Though I stopped buying and eating conventional meat almost a year ago mainly for environmental reasons, my family heritage is strongly connected to the raising, hunting and preparation of all sorts of animals and their parts, and I have respect for the time and consideration my French family, for example, takes in their approach to eating animal products. I remember joining my grandfather on a once-in-a-blue-moon type hunting picnic where he and his buds roasted an entire boar on an open spit, and then invited their families to join in on the feast. My grandmother taught me how to make duck liver paté from scratch. My mother savours the trickiest parts of the animals she eats – the heads of birds, as you’ve read, and sucking the bones of rabbit carcasses. 

If you get squimish by the thought of having, say, pig brains, cow tongue or fried blood for lunch then perhaps you should reconsider why you eat any meat at all.

For those of you who do eat meat, why do you like the certain parts of the certain animals you do eat? Is it tradition, the taste, the norm?

Parts of the pig. Image Credit: North Carolina's Indy Week.

Before my 2012 visit to North Carolina, I had no idea there were so many ways to BBQ a pig.
Image Credit: North Carolina’s Indy Week.

Grand-mère's Crab Egg Dip

Grand-mère’s Crab Egg Dip, a “pincer-to-feeler” approach.


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