Where can I buy horsemeat?
May 16, 2006 11:53 AM   Subscribe

Where can I buy horsemeat?

For no other reason than curiosity, I'd like to see what horsemeat tastes like. I've talked to some European friends who rave about it, but, so far, it seems impossible to get it in the States, specifically near Baltimore. Any ideas?
posted by electroboy to Food & Drink (12 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Look for an area with a large Belgian population. I know I've had horse burger at family reunions when I was a little kid.
posted by substrate at 11:55 AM on May 16, 2006

Ask for basashi in an upmarket Japanese restaurant. It's horse sashimi. It's not really an upmarket thing in Japan but would count as exotic in America meaning upmarket places are more likely to have it.
posted by Jenga at 11:58 AM on May 16, 2006

Try European / German / Dutch delicatessens. Sorry I'm not in the area so I can't give you a better recommendation.

I found this place in the Yellow Pages, good luck...
posted by chuma at 12:22 PM on May 16, 2006

Oooh, if you do find a source (especially online!), let us know. I'm looking for some, too. Evidently, their fat is the best for fries.
posted by mimi at 1:36 PM on May 16, 2006

mimi, the Belgians (inventors of the misnamed French Fry) used Ox fat.
posted by substrate at 1:50 PM on May 16, 2006

I've had horse meat. The first sandwich (and my first experience with it) was delightful. It was a tiny mindfuck to take the first bite, but it was so good. Very light, very sweet, very rich.

The second sandwich, several years later, wasn't nearly as memorable. I'll try a third time, and best two out of three will take the prize.

My source for horsemeat sandwiches is a local german-run deli. The meat was very dark and had a german name that I can't recall. I chose it simply for variety, and the woman behind the counter quietly told me what it was and double-checked that I really wanted to go through with it.

Ergo, I suspect you'll need to hit a german/belgian/whatever deli and ask for it directly.
posted by five fresh fish at 4:08 PM on May 16, 2006

You're not far from Canada. Up here in Montreal IGA sells horse meat. I'm trying to find a Canadian dealer that shops, but no luck. Most horse meat actually comes from the US and is shipped overseas. Horse is on of those animals where the meat tastes better as the animal is older. Or so I've heard.
posted by furtive at 6:00 PM on May 16, 2006

posted by furtive at 6:01 PM on May 16, 2006

Here's a link to two Canadian shops that specialise in horse meat . Heads up though, they're both going to answer the phone in French, so speak slowly and be patient.

Key words to use: "lee-vray-zon" (livraison) is delivery, and "ay-tass yoo-nee" (√Čtats-unis) is United States and "vee-and shuh-val-in" is horse meat. "eun keelo" will get you two pounds, "deuh keelos" will get you four. :-)
posted by furtive at 6:11 PM on May 16, 2006

I wouldn't eat horsemeat in North America. It is not regulated as a food animal and a lot of the horses go straight from the racetrack or farms and have all kinds of medication in their bodies, including anabolic steroids and things like Bute that are very damaging to human livers. FYI.
posted by fshgrl at 7:08 PM on May 16, 2006

Funny, I was just reading this article(found somewhere around here I think).

posted by a_green_man at 8:17 PM on May 16, 2006

I have also tried horse meat. It was sliced very thinly and smoked. I didn't enjoy it much, but this may have more to do with the smokey flavour rather than the meat itself. I was given some by a friend who is of Dutch heritage ( she called it something that sounded like rokeflake) and she told me an amusing story about it.

Apparently, it was illegal to sell horse meat in Canada when she was a child. It was a highly prized delicacy in her family and her mother managed to find a butcher who would sell it to them. This transaction would always be conducted in the most circumspect of ways, with much whispering and many code words. Then, the meat would be discreetly wrapped in brown paper and hidden in her mother's shopping bag. At home, it would be doled out in a miserly fashion, and there would never seem to be as much as anyone would like. Because of this, she had always thought of it as the most delicious food available.

It is now available legally, which she says has removed much of the joy of eating it.

As for where to find it, try Dutch or Belgian delicatessans. And as for the safety of the meat, I wouldn't worry too much unless you were planning to make it a regular part of your diet, in which case I would question the butcher or deli owner as to the origins of the meat.
posted by alltomorrowsparties at 12:34 PM on May 19, 2006

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