Guinea Pig for Dinner

Dan Features, General, This Land of Ours

Guinea pigs, 3 years old
They are best known as lab animals and as cute furry household pets. The culinary appeal of guinea pig is once again creeping back into the United States. This time, the introduction is likely to stick. Cathy Isom tells us why this popular critter could soon be offered on more menus near you.

Guinea Pig for Dinner

According to the Migration Policy Institute, Between 2000 and 2010, South American immigrants were the second-fastest growing segment of the Latin American immigrant population. Most moving to California, Florida, New Jersey and New York.

From: (the Salt)

You may best know the guinea pig as a nervous little pet that lives in a cage and eats alfalfa pellets.

Now, the rodents are increasingly showing up on plates in the United States.

Guinea pig meal

South American restaurants on both coasts seem to be pushing the trend, answering to demand mostly from Andean expats for what is considered a fine and valuable food in Ecuador, Peru and Colombia. Middle-class foodies with a taste for exotic delicacies are also ordering, photographing and blogging about guinea pig. The animals — calledcuyes in Spanish — are usually cooked whole, often grilled, sometimes deep fried. Many diners eat every last morsel, literally from head to toe.

But there may be more to gain from eating guinea pig than bizarre foods bragging rights. According to activists, eating guinea pig is good for the environment.

Read the full article here.

Read more on guinea pig as a meal, and where you may purchase the meat: How guinea pig, an Andean delicacy, is making its way onto dinner plates in the US

Guinea Pig Meal image credit: Flickr/nicolasnova