Eating Camel in Mauritania

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But I got it all down, wiped my fingers, and gave Zaida and the others a triumphant smile.

Then they shoved the bowl closer to me.

“You want more?” a neighbor asked.

I considered the bowl, the fist-size hunk of cold meat, and the sandy couscous, and realized that, in every traveler’s journeys, there comes a time when you realize that there are some cultural differences you will never be able to overcome. For me, it wasn’t tarantulas or snakes or maggots. It was camel meat. And I was OK with that.

I reached for the figs.

Brooklyn–based Michael Y. Park has written for The New York Times, the New York Post, and the Toronto Globe and Mail, and he is a regular contributor to Epicurious. Park has feasted at a picnic with the king and queen of Malaysia, and dined on roadside kebabs while disguised as a Hazara tribesman in Afghanistan. He has previously written about the founder of Meatless Mondays and the Danish National Barbecue Team for Gourmet Live.

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