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Balut Eggs a Filipino Food Recipe you might not Be able to swallow.

Updated on April 14, 2016

A Look Inside A Balut Egg

Philippine Duck Egg Balut What's inside
Philippine Duck Egg Balut What's inside

Balut A Philippine Delicacy. Could You Eat It?

My first experience with Balut was In the mid 90s when I was living in an apartment compound outside of Manila with my wife. One of the things I enjoyed while their, were all the various street vendors that would ride up and down our street on their tricycles with baskets selling fruits and vegetables. It was wonderful getting fresh produce brought to our doorstep every day. We lived on a very busy residential street during the day, but at night it was very peaceful and quiet. One night about 2:00 in the morning I was laying in bed and I heard a strange sound, It was coming from outside and it was getting louder and louder. I woke my wife up and asked her, what's that sound I'm hearing. She said, that's the man that makes and sells Balut. He rides down the street on his bike yelling out the word (Balut) because he has some for sale. I asked her what it was, and why on earth is he out there in the middle of the night trying to sell it . She just giggled and said they were eggs that many Filipinos just loved to eat, and we would see them at the market someday. The next day my brother-in-law stopped over to have lunch with us (a common occurrence) and the topic of Balut came up. He laughed and told me I would have to try it. He said "real men like to eat Balut " and if I ate them during the night it would give me more power in the bedroom, (as he raised his arm and made a fist}. and it should always be washed down with some San Miguel beer. Of course, I just laughed.

A couple of days later and we decided to go shopping at one of the local markets. We first headed to my favorite fish vendor. He always had yellow fin tuna, it was my favorite food to eat while I was their. I loved to cook tuna steaks about an 1" 1/2 thick on my little Hitachi using banana tree charcoal and squeezing little limes on them. We visited about 5 more vendors ( buying various things) and found some Balut that she liked and bought some. When we got home she started dinner right away. As we sat down to eat she asked me if I wanted to try the egg (I said no thanks) not knowing what I would be getting into. I politely said go ahead. She cracked open an egg and started slurping the juice out of the egg. I watched in horror as she then began eating the rest of this partly developed duck egg. Later that evening she tried to kiss me, but I just couldn't do it. She really didn't understand what the big deal was and I really couldn't explain. I just apologize and said that it would just take me awhile to get over what I had just seen. I couldn't even kiss her until the next day. All I can say is thank God she took it with a good sense of humor. We still laugh about it from time to time 20 years later.

How Balut Is Made.

Balut is a common Filipino street food, Their considered a delicacy. In Tagalog the word means (Wrapped).They are also commonly found in China, Philippines and throughout Southeast Asia. The eggs are either Mallard or the preferred Muscovy duck eggs because of the rich creamy taste of the eggs. Balut is basically a partially developed duck embryo. Many men consider it a form of natural Viagra and say it helps virility. Many Filipino men prefer to eat the eggs that are much more developed or gross looking. They say this will make "A Real Man" out of you.

The eggs for the most part are still produced the old-fashioned way without modern incubators. The fertilized eggs are kept warm in the sun stored in either covered baskets or buried in sand. After roughly 9 days the eggs are held to a light to see the embryo inside. They are then stored once again until the eggs are about 17 days old. They are then boiled and sold by street vendors while still warm. Eating Balut is of course a matter personal taste some like to eat it plain or sprinkled with some salt, garlic, or chili and vinegar. Eating usually begins with sipping the juice before eating the young chick.

It’s hard for most Westerners to get their head around eating a partially developed egg fetus. However, they do offer a nutritious high protein snack or meal for many people who just love them. One word of caution they are very high in cholesterol so if you have concerns about that you would definitely want to avoid eating them often. Personally, I don’t think I will ever get around to eating one. However, I must say, I absolutely love Filipino foods. Since I met and married my Filipino wife I have never eaten better. The different ingredients she adds to foods like garlic, chilies, ginger, coconut, lemon grass are delicious. I just love the stir fried vegetables and fish dishes she makes they taste wonderful. The food is so much healthier compared to my old american diet.


Balut Nutritional Information

Nutrition Facts
Serving size: 1 Egg
Calories 150
Calories from Fat90
% Daily Value *
Fat 10 g15%
Saturated fat 0 g
Unsaturated fat 0 g
Carbohydrates 0 g
Sugar 0 g
Fiber 0 g
Protein 10 g20%
Cholesterol 619 mg206%
Sodium 120 mg5%
* The Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet, so your values may change depending on your calorie needs. The values here may not be 100% accurate because the recipes have not been professionally evaluated nor have they been evaluated by the U.S. FDA.

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Penoy Baluts Not So Gross Little Brother

I like to call (Penoy) Baluts normal little brother. These eggs are very similar to a regular hard-boiled chicken egg, something that americans are accustomed to. The only difference would be the yolks are much larger in size and have a rich custard like taste. These are eggs that were to be Balut but in the process failed to develop an embryo after incubation. The eggs come in two different types. One is a dry type, which is like a normal hard-boiled egg. The other is a moist type that has yellow gelatin texture to it. Penoy and Balut are eaten the same way, usually warm sprinkled with salt and spiced vinegar. So if your ever in the Philippines and come across Balut but you can't eat it, Penoy would be a very good option. They are usually found together you just need to ask for them, as it is not as highly prized and touted as the mighty Balut.

Penoy Egg

Philippine Penoy Egg A look inside.
Philippine Penoy Egg A look inside.

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    • Dressage Husband profile image

      Stephen J Parkin 2 years ago from Pine Grove, Nova Scotia, Canada

      Not quite as hard to eat as raw Sheep's eyeballs, which I was once offered to eat!

    • stricktlydating profile image

      StricktlyDating 2 years ago from Australia

      OMG! I've never heard of this before. I could not try it, would not even want to look at it (I'm in Australia so hopefully I never have to), but gee what a great read this Hub was!

    • juderes profile image

      judalyn eres 23 months ago from cebu city, philippines

      Here's one tip on eating balut, so won't be frightened. I took my Aunt's advice to eat it in the DARK. You won't be able to see the baby chicken's head.. The elder says balut is good in strengthening your knees.

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