Vegemite and pork brains: students try Ghastly Gourmet at Market Day

Cassidy Alexander

Photo by Luiza Motta
Photo by Luiza Motta

UNF Market Day got a little scary this Wednesday. In honor of Halloween, the Student Union hosted Ghastly Gourmet, an event that let students test their limits by eating food that to many would be, well, ghastly.

Seven of UNF’s bravest students competed to eat some adventurous dishes, including durian (edible flesh that emits a penetrating odor), mountain oysters (a dish made of deep-fried bull, pig, or sheep testicles), gator, Bovrite and Vegemite (two pastes from Britain and Australia made from yeast), haggis (a Scottish pudding made from sheep organs), cuitalacoche (Mexican corn smut, or fungus that grows on the vegetable), pork brains (a stir-fry stape from China and Korea), rattlesnake and bugs.

These dishes are eaten in different parts of the globe, though most are not something you see every day at the UNF eateries. Each of this year’s participants also received toothbrushes, toothpaste and water to cleanse their palates between rounds.

The Ghastly Gourmet reigning champion was physical therapy sophomore Noah Maldonado, who won last year’s challenge as well.

Maldonado said the grossest thing he’s had to eat was “last year’s tripe.” Tripe is made from the organs of farm animals (in Maldonado’s case, it was cow).

This is the second year that the Student Union has hosted Ghastly Gourmet, which was the brainchild of event planning associate Brock Ertel. He has always been a fan of Halloween and considered this Fear Factor-type event to be perfect for a college campus where people are very willing to try new things.

All photos by Luiza Motta

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