Which country has a national dish called 'balut'?
'Balut' is a developing bird embryo (usually a duck) that is boiled and eaten from the shell. It is commonly sold as street food in the Philippines and other parts of Asia.
The Tagalog and Malay word 'balot' or 'balut' means "wrap". A 'balut' is a fertilized bird egg which is incubated for a period of 14 to 21 days depending on the local culture and then boiled or steamed.
The contents are eaten directly from the shell. 'Balut' that is incubated for longer periods have a well-developed embryo and the features of the duckling are recognizable.
The partially-developed embryo bones are soft enough to chew and swallow as a whole. The mallard duck ('Anas platyrhynchus'), also known as the 'Pateros duck', is considered to be the most important breed for egg production to make 'balut'.
Wherever Filipinos migrated for work, a large market for 'balut' would develop. Controversies arose as knowledge of the food spread around the Southeast Asian countries and then globally.
'Balut' is recognized as a national food of the Philippines, but possibly originated from China. It is said that an early form of 'balut' was brought by Chinese traders and migrants to the Philippines; the Chinese may have sparked the interest and excitement for the Philippines' love of 'balut'.
It is commonly served as an appetizer in restaurants. The taste of 'balut' is similar to chicken soup. It also has an unusual texture.