When most people think about meat, some of the first things that spring to mind are things like chicken, turkey, hog, beef, and lamb meat. These are just few examples.
However, what about hippopotamuses? Are they consumed by humans? What does Hippo taste like?
The answer could take you by surprise.
Hippo meat is a regular element of the diet in some regions of Africa, in contrast to the Western tradition of serving less exotic cuts of meat.
You may want to give Hippo a go if you’ve arrived at a moment in your life when you feel like it’s time to exercise a bit more daringness with your gustatory preferences.
Continue reading to learn more about its flavor, how it should be prepared in the kitchen, and whether or not it is OK to consume hippo flesh.
What is Hippo?
The hippopotamus is a big, four-legged animal that is native to Africa and may be seen living in rivers, lakes, and other types of bodies of water.
These creatures are considered herbivores due to the fact that plants make up the majority of their diet.
In spite of this, studies conducted in recent years have shown that it is not unusual for hippos to consume meat, including the carcasses of other animals and fish.
Hippos are recognized as one of the most lethal creatures, being twice as lethal as lions, yet they are also one of the most popular tourist attractions in Africa. Hippos are found throughout Africa.
Despite the mass of their bodies, they have a strong urge to chase prey and are adept hunters.
Therefore, many individuals are curious about how they may possibly taste.
Hippos, on the other hand, are consumed on a regular basis in West Africa and are considered to be a costly delicacy in northern Congo.
What Does Hippo Taste Like?
When considered from a culinary point of view, hippo, which is short for hippopotamus, has a very particular flavor.
Their meat has a variety of distinct flavors, ranging from sweet to savory, and it has a chewy consistency.
Beef is the flavor that most closely matches them.
However, hippos have a more robust taste and a somewhat gamey aroma.
A tip that may be used to bring out all of the tastes and aromas of the ingredients is to marinate the meat and combine that with a lengthy simmer.
But beyond from the one-of-a-kind flavor, are there any other aspects of hippo meat that contribute to its desirability? The answer to your question is “yes,” and the meat contains a wide variety of nutrients that you were probably not even aware of.
When you consider the physical characteristics of this enormous animal, you could conclude that the meat they produce must contain a lot of fat.
But this is not the case; contrary to popular belief, hippos don’t have a lot of fat or cholesterol in their flesh; instead, eating hippos gives you a lot of protein.
If you happen to reside in a region where hippos are common and their consumption is sanctioned, then opting for this kind of wild meat might very well be a wise decision.
You don’t have to be concerned about putting your health at danger in order to indulge in this delicacy.
It is possible to cook it in a manner that is nearly identical to that of beef and lamb.
However, in order to fully extract all of the flavors and make the meat soft, a longer cooking time is required.
In a head-to-head competition with beef, hippo meat came out on top in a significant way.
It has an unique marbling, a texture that satisfies, and a taste that is deeper.
In addition, if you decide to caramelize the flesh, you’ll discover that the glaze and juicy quality of the meat cannot be matched by any other kind of meat.
Is It Illegal to Eat Hippo Meat?
You may want to give hippo meat a go now that you are aware that it is fit for human eating.
However, before you do so, it is imperative that you be aware that there are some legal ramifications associated with the consumption of this meat.
As a result of the animal’s status as an endangered species, it is against the law in many nations to shoot hippos or consume their flesh.
In the United States, for instance, it is against the law to sell or buy hippo flesh because of ethical concerns.
Nevertheless, hippos are still the subject of active hunting in many regions of Africa, and their flesh is consumed on a regular basis.
Be careful to do your homework and get the appropriate permissions in advance if you ever find yourself in or near one of these regions and are interested in trying hippo meat.
Included in this restriction is the shipment of hippo meat: at the moment, lawfully harvested animals from Africa may only be sent to Europe and Canada.
Therefore, the likelihood of discovering them in the United States is quite remote.
However, in the event that you are able to get some hippo flesh, the following are some suggestions for preparing it.
Hippo meat, because of its naturally dense consistency, should be cooked gently over a moderate heat.
It will assist in preventing the meat from drying out, which will keep it from getting tough.
The braise method is one of the quickest and easiest methods to prepare hippo meat.
Using this technique, the meat is first seared in a skillet before being simmered over low heat in either water, stock, or wine.
You also have the option of braising the meat.
To make the meat easier to consume, cut it into smaller pieces.
Put it in the broth of your choice together with the vegetables, herbs, and spices that you like, and boil it until the meat is cooked.
Is hippopotamus meat good to eat?
Their meat has a variety of distinct flavors, ranging from sweet to savory, and it has a chewy consistency. Beef is the flavor that most closely matches them. However, hippos have a more robust taste and a somewhat gamey aroma.
Even though it is against the law in the majority of countries across the globe to eat hippos, the flesh from these animals is nonetheless eaten despite the potential threat that it poses to biodiversity.
People don’t even squander a second of their time purchasing them at the locations where they are sold.
They are completely sold out before the word can spread across the whole town.
Take advantage of the opportunity to taste the deliciousness of something new to eat if you ever have the chance to sample this flavorful meat from the wild.
You could discover that you like it, and perhaps come up with a novel method to explain how the meat tastes at its peak.