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DOCUMENTARY: Could You Eat An Elephant?
On: Channel 4 (104)
Date: Wednesday 14th January 2009 (NEW)
Time: 22:00 to 23:25 (1 hour and 25 minutes long)
Two of the UK's leading chefs test their steel and their stomach eating the world's most taboo foods
Fergus Henderson and Jeremy Lee are two of the UK's most daring chefs. At Fergus' celebrated restaurant, St John, 'nose to tail' eating means including everything from pigs' ears to bone marrow is on the menu. Jeremy's position as head chef at top eatery Blueprint Café, puts the two friends on the foodie frontline.
Now Fergus and Jeremy are being sent on an epic culinary journey across Europe, Asia and Africa to truly test their own limitations. To find their culinary ceiling, the duo attempt to eat their way up through the ladder of animals considered taboo for consumption in Britain but very much part of the daily diet in other parts of the world.
Starting with very small creatures and working their way up to the very big, Fergus and Jeremy visit places where these meats are local and seasonal, to see if they can eat them in the traditional way, from beetles and maggot-infested cheese, through rat, snake and dog to horse, elephant, and finally monkey.
They start their journey in Tuscany, Italy to sample birds, but of a smaller variety than the sort that usually makes it onto British plates. Jeremy stays in Italy to sample Marcetto, a maggot-infested cheese that is said to be an aphrodisiac.
Then it's on to Hanoi for a spot of cobra and a dish of rat; Namibia in southern Africa, to feast on jewel beetle paste and back to Italy for some lovely horse.
The pressure is on for the chefs as they are faced with meats that have an emotional impact of the pair. Dog in Vietnam, elephants in Namibia and finally, the hardest challenge of all - monkey.
Through the increasingly difficult dishes, the programme takes a serious look at British food taboos, culinary revulsions and dining preconceptions.
Watch Could You Eat an Elephant? Wednesday, 10pm on Channel 4
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