Just when I thought I could say I have seen it all, this happened. I know this might not be too weird for Bangkok but this one really grossed me out.
You know the Serpent Fish aka Snake fish and Dragon fish?
The Thais love to eat that fish roasted, guts still in, scales still on, mouth stuffed with lemongrass, and covered with rock salt then served with a tasty sauce.
I was queuing at a popular local neighborhood street stall when I heard this loud ruckus. I twisted around to see salt spraying everywhere and the grill cook chasing a bleeding, salty fish with a chopstick in its mouth slithering up the pavement! My guess is that this particular fish had no intention of being roasted. I learned that it had flopped off the white hot grill, splattering salt, coals, and other fish (happily roasting) onto the ground and then made a dash for the puddle in the street. The cook finally caught it and plunked it back into a bucket half full of other dressed fish. That’s right he didn’t even wash it.
If that doesn’t make your stomach turn this will:
The cook then took out a top grill grate, fished out that apprehended little convict and 3 of its buddies, 1 still writhing, and sandwiched them between grill and grate. There they burned wriggling and protesting for a completely mesmerized crowd. I just stood there with my mouth open feeling completely sorry for those little guys. When I couldn’t take it anymore, I signaled to my party and left.
The part that sucks the most is that that was one of my favorite restaurants.
But before you start feeling sorry too, here’s a few shocking details about this awesome predator. Mind you, this intrepid bane of flooded rice fields can live out of water for up to a week. They attack farmers and eat anything that moves. They are extremely hard to kill. Somehow, a pair was let go in the Midwest lakes of the U.S. of A and now American sportsman are plagued by this monster. The trout and bass that are so prized in America are now being gobbled up by this slimy snake fish. It has no predator and is known to bite chunks out of humans. It’s a bit like it is the piranha of the East.
I think that’s why the Thais love eating it. Revenge served with a spicy sauce.
Bangkok is weird and wonderful!