Eating Iguana, the “Chicken of the Trees”

Posted: July 3, 2018 in Animals, Food, Great Ideas, Humor
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Orlando Sentinel: While many people view South Florida’s invasive iguana population as an annoyance at best and a pandemic at worst, Ishmeal Asson sees something else: lunch.

The Fort Lauderdale resident and native Trinidadian considers eating iguanas to be a way of life. Growing up, Asson learned to roast the island critters at roadside and backyard gatherings. Iguana is a staple in the Caribbean, where the reptiles are a native species and are known as “pollo de los árboles,” or Chicken of the Trees. Their meat contains more protein than chicken, and members of some cultures believe it has medicinal properties.

Asson said he and his friends use a traditional method of preparing iguana. “First, we cut off the head, then roast [the body] on the fire. You have to roast it with the skin on because it’s easier to take the skin off once it’s roasted,” he said. “Then, we cut it up into pieces and season it with a lot of fresh produce like chives and onions. I love to season it with curry and hot pepper, too. We’re having a cookout this weekend.”

Not gonna lie. I don’t hate this idea. Iguana seasoned with chives, onions, curry and hot peppers sounds delish. Hey, I’m a big animal guy but I love gator, tree frogs and stuff like that. Anything that will eat me is fair game for dinner in my opinion. Plus I was harassed by an iguana the size of a German Shepherd in Montserrat once. Dead serious. Dude was relentless. Have you ever seen one of those things run? Sneaky fast, man. Bottom line, pass me a plate of that Chicken of the Trees, man.

PS- I’ve never been harassed by a tree frog. Sorry if I misled you there.

 

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