NPR Claims Pig Rectum Is a Suitable Substitute for Calamari -- In a Pinch

pork bung turned calamari.jpg
Beware of what emerges from the murky depths of a deep fryer.
If you happened to listen to NPR this weekend you might have stumbled on an interesting food story on This American Life. The episode opens with a detailed examination of pork bung, which has been breaded and fried and served as calamari to unsuspecting diners.

This can't be possible, right? Turns out it can. And while while the investigation determines that dining on pork bung at your favorite Italian restaurant is improbable (most hog bung is exported to Asia) the segment is more than entertaining.

"A pork bung is long and floppy and ugly," describes Ben Calhoun. "At one end it widens out in a bulbous shape like a pink, wrinkly pear -- that's the rectum. At the other end it narrows out into a soft, pinkish tube."

Sounds appetizing right? But it turns out after you bread and fry bung slices -- after they emerge from the "redemptive oils of the great culinary equalizer that is the deep-frying" as Glass puts it -- they have an almost identical flavor and texture to calamari given the same treatment.

Check out the episode here. And if you're ever chewing on a dense, rubbery ring of calamari at a restaurant and you think you detect the faint whisper of deep-fried porcine flavor, good luck with that.




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33 comments
wadedowdell
wadedowdell

It wasn't Ira Glass!  It was Ben Calhoun!

Darrin Woodard
Darrin Woodard

Asia in the Trammel Crow building downtown has the best Calamari by the way.

Darrin Woodard
Darrin Woodard

i knew it!!!! not surprised. i guess its better than that gelatinous chicken beaks, feets and asses, all grinded up with food coloring, flavor, dye, and bi products, deep fried in it goodness all for a dollar. thanks Wendys. and trashy McDonalds. gross!!!

Carl Fant
Carl Fant

Jon, you tenderize the squid and you pound the rectum.

Jon Goerner
Jon Goerner

Okay, I know how to tenderize squid, but how do you...Oh. On second thought, never mind.

CJ Dylan
CJ Dylan

Tell that to Admiral Ackbar!!

Ashley Richardson
Ashley Richardson

NPR didn't make such claims. The show 'This American Life' featured a story on pig rectums being used as calamari. Where is the copyeditor for the title on this?

Carl Fant
Carl Fant

Oh my! Squid from a pig's asshole! Fancy! A pig asshole? Don't they all have seats on Congress?

Doug Crawford
Doug Crawford

Um, no. Fried Pig rectum needs to be labeled as pig rectum. Calamari is squid. Furthermore, snake and rabbit do not taste like chicken. It taste like snake and rabbit. Thank you.

Pete Kendall
Pete Kendall

please, not this soon after a livestock show

John Nguyen
John Nguyen

Maybe because I'm Vietnamese, I don't found that disgusting at all. Pass? I will try it if it's cooked like fried calamari.

Nik Shah
Nik Shah

Improbable? They basically said they had no evidence that it was happening anywhere...

J_A_
J_A_

Fried pig intestine is actually quite delicious.

jswebi
jswebi

I was floored when I saw packages of it in the meat cooler at Ranch 99 in Plano. They actually sell and  eat pigs ass.

beda50
beda50

I was convinced the whole thing was a spoof, being that Will Arnett was part of the show; however, the second half of the show was so serious that I then had doubts about the first part.

Scruffygeist
Scruffygeist

Odd, considering squid is one of the few seafoods that will have absolutely no problems staying sustainable with very little help from us.

boborr
boborr

Wow, that's nasty! I remember when the folks used to eat EVERY part of the pig, poultry, cow or lamb-EVERY part.  Heck, my mom was a huge fan of boiled said bones for a stew.  A couple of years ago I showed my daughter a cow tongue, and I swear that girl's been vegetarian ever since!

Myrna.Minkoff-Katz
Myrna.Minkoff-Katz topcommenter

I refuse to eat deep-fried calamari, anyway.  Marinated and grilled calamari are far better.

ChrisYu
ChrisYu

@Ashley Richardson over at the Windmill

primi_timpano
primi_timpano topcommenter

@JaniceA

Very true. And it is all protein. The rectal "calimari" probably cooks with more forgiveness than the original.

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