Turtle meat? Is that even edible? A big fat YES.
Turtle meat is popularly eaten in various parts of the world, including Turkey, China, Russia, and Poland.
So, if your next-door neighbor from China invites you for dinner and turtle soup is on the menu, do not be alarmed.
It is quite tasty, actually. Turtle meat has a firm texture and tastes a bit like chicken.
However, it is more flavorful than chicken and has a stronger taste.
Want to learn more about what does turtle meat taste like? Just scroll down.
What is Turtle Meat?
Turtle meat is the flesh of turtles used as food.
It can be harvested from wild turtles or raised on turtle farms.
There are several kinds of freshwater turtles that are edible.
However, the most common ones are sea turtles or snapping turtles.
Eating turtle meat is usually considered illegal in many places because these animals are endangered.
However, there are some exceptions to this rule, depending on your locality.
In some cases, you may even need a permit to hunt sea turtles and consume them.
So, make sure to check your local laws and regulations before consuming turtle meat.
Turtle meat is a delicacy in many parts of the world, especially in Asia.
It is often considered an aphrodisiac (sexual stimulant) and is said to have many health benefits.
Now, if you’re wondering which parts of a turtle you can eat, the answer is all of it.
That’s right; you can eat the flesh, organs, eggs, and even the shell of a turtle.
Just keep the gall bladder, skeleton, nails, lungs, and skull out of the equation, and you’re good to go.
Of course, you don’t eat the hard shells directly.
But they’re often used in making soups or other dishes like turtle jelly, a.k.a. Guilinggao.
What Does Turtle Meat Taste Like?
Turtle meat is highly sought after for its unique flavor and texture.
The meat is dark and stringy with a slightly sweet taste.
As said earlier, the taste of turtle meat is often compared to chicken.
In fact, a large snapping turtle’s meat has seven distinct parts, each reminding you of beef, chicken, pork, veal, shrimp, goat, or fish.
Of course, there’s a part of the population who just can’t stand the taste or texture of turtle meat.
You may even find some people describing the taste of turtle meat as ‘muddy’ ‘gamy’ or ‘fishy’.
So, you may just have to try this delicacy for yourself to see where you stand.
After all, different people have different taste buds.
Other than its flavor, turtle meat is also known for its high nutritional value.
It is a great source of protein, omega-3 fatty acids, iron, selenium, and vitamins A and B12.
Besides, it’s super low in fat and is said to contain almost no carbohydrates.
Thanks to its nutritional content, turtle meat may offer several health benefits like improved bone health, immunity, and skin health.
How to Cook and Use Turtle Meat?
You don’t need to be a pro in the kitchen to cook turtle meat.
Just learn some of the basics and get started.
Besides, if you have cooked or eaten other game meats, such as squirrel or rabbit, you already have a good foundation for cooking turtle.
Firstly, you’ll have to clean the turtle.
This process can be a little messy, but it’s not difficult.
- Wash the turtle several times to get rid of any dirt or debris from its skin and shell.
- Once the turtle is clean, you can start by boiling the entire turtle in water. Once the water comes to a boil, remove your turtle.
- Then, remove the skin and shell. You can use a sharp knife or kitchen shears for this.
This way, you can easily separate the meat and start the cooking process.
Surprisingly, turtle meat is very versatile.
Hence, you can use it in a variety of recipes.
You can sauté, fry, bake, or even grill turtle meat.
Just remember to cook it thoroughly before eating.
About 15-20 minutes should be enough.
The Chinese love their turtle soups.
In fact, it’s considered a delicacy there. Want to try it out?
Simply get some turtle meat chunks, add them to your soup, and let it simmer for a while.
Add some veggies of your choice and enjoy a hearty bowl of deliciousness.
After reading through all the above information, have you decided to try turtle meat? If not, we hope we’ve at least given you something to think about.
Of course, it’s important to remember that turtles are an endangered species.
So, you might want to consume turtle meat only from a reliable source.
This way, you can enjoy this delicious delicacy without harming these gentle creatures.