Hoa Mac Co….and a cobra for dinner!!!

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We’ve ridden about 250 km today from Kom-Tum to Buon Ma Thuon. We’ve practically spent all day on the road surrounded by never-ending black pepper plantations. They dry the seeds of pepper straight away on the edge of the road, the smell was very intense.

Black pepper bush

I felt like a giant fried steak at the end of the day. We pulled over to chill out a little bit. Uyen showed us some plant in the ditch. It’s called Hoa Mac Co…i’ve never seen anything like it before but it closes it’s leaves when you touch it. (you can have a look for a video below).

http://youtu.be/5T1yj9ozuxc

There is a story about a king that once met a beautiful girl in the mountains. He fell in a love with that girl and proposed to her. She was very shy so when he kissed her she shied away. The king went to the war and when he came back to the mountains the girl was dead. He couldn’t find her anywhere, her soul came to this “shy” tiny green plant. Uyen sung a song about this beautiful mountain girl, it was so sweet!!!!

“shy” flower Hoa Mac Co

We went for the strangest dinner in my life. Uyen found a restaurant for us where they only serve wild mountain animals. Honestly that place reminded me of a zoo garden more than any restaurant. There were turtles crawling on the floor of the kitchen, huge  snakes preserved in bottles of rice wine, a cook was just preparing some sort of big mouse for barbecue.

poor turtle……

In half an hour they brought an almost 3 m long cobra to the restaurant…actually the video below is self-explanatory.

http://youtu.be/v_l3ZAGl_ZU

They served the cobra as 6 different meals and they drained the blood into a bottle with vodka. All i know is that I was pretty sick of drinking whole blood vodka and any spiritual or mystical moment didn’t come up. Below is an explanation of how snake wine is made, we had both versions of the mixed but with vodka not wine. The video above is the actual snake we ate and drank.

Adrian drinking snake blood with vodka.

Uyen and Adrian enjoyin a cobra dinner.

snake delicacies

There are two varieties of snake wine:

  • Steeped: A large venomous snake can be placed into a glass jar of rice wine, sometimes with smaller snakes and medicinal herbs and left to steep for many months. The wine is drunk as a restorative in small shots or cups.
  • Mixed: Body fluids of snake are mixed into wine and consumed immediately in the form of a shot. Snake blood wine is prepared by slicing a snake along its belly and draining its blood directly into the drinking vessel filled with rice wine or grain alcohol. Snake bile wine is done through a similar method by using the contents of the gall bladder.
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