We sat down with Anthony Bourdain of “Parts Unknown” and Danny Bowien of Mission Chinese to discuss Bourdain’s new film, “Wasted!” and the ever-changing food landscape. Here, they discuss some of their favorite underrated foods that you should be on the lookout for. Following is a transcript of the video.
Anthony Bourdain: So many of traditional foods that we sort of fallen out of touch with are underrated. You know, things like a traditional Italian ragu of, you know, oxtail and, you know, a neck bone. Pigs feet can be, you know — these days, pigs feet, you have to go to an expensive hipster restaurant to get. The next – the new lobster? I don’t know. Pig tails would be nice. They can be really, really great. And they’re, you know, in limited supply, just like lobster. And takes some skill to eat.
Danny Bowien: For me, I moved to San Francisco when I was 19 and started, like — I had Korean food for the first time when I got off of the airplane. One of the first things that I had at that meal was grilled, griddled mackerel. Like a piece of griddled mackerel and I was, like, “This is amazing.” It’s very fishy, but not in a bad way. ‘Cause I’d only grown up eating catfish that was deep-fried. You know what I mean?
I never ate, like, grilled fish or knew the flavor of the ocean. We’re really starting to showcase more oily fish, like, little smelt and sardines, anchovies, even like, little bait fish. Using those in innovative ways and getting people excited about them. ‘Cause that’s what we’re excited about.
Bourdain: Across America people have lost touch with what used to be a staple at a certain lower-income point. So it’s really a lot of these ingredients we are talking about — we’re urging people to use more of, so as to avoid waste. The techniques we’re talking about — slow-cooking, braising, stewing, pickling — these are nothing new to, you know, people, you know, even today in rural West Virginia, all across the South. And, you know, in huge parts of America, particularly in the cities, we have lost touch with them.
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