In order to control his stock of cobras, a local exotic animal farm owner in the south decided to make “soft-boiled snake eggs,” a delicacy inspired by the practice of eating fertilized duck eggs in Southeast Asian countries.
Huang Kuo-nan (黃國男), nicknamed the “Snake King,” is an expert in breeding reptiles, with more than 30 years of experience raising crocodiles and more than 20 years breeding cobras. He now owns an educational animal farm in Greater Tainan.
Huang says the facility contains more than 100 kinds of exotic animals and claims to be the first person to successfully breed cobras in captivity, with between 4,000 and 5,000 eggs laid on his farm in June and July every year.
“The idea of making the fetilized cobra egg was just a sudden inspiration,” Huang said in a telephone interview, adding that he first started the project when he needed to control his cobra stock five years ago.
Huang said he only makes fertilized cobra eggs when the snakes lay too many eggs.
The fertilized egg contents are much harder to deal with than a conventional boiled egg, because of the partially formed snake fetus inside.
Quoting a visitor surnamed Huang who went to the farm and saw the eggs on Sunday, local media reported that he said: “I really didn’t think I’d have the guts to put a small snake in my mouth and then chew and swallow it. It was simply disgusting.”
For those who are not so adventurous Huang recommends hard-boiled, unfertilized cobra eggs, a bargain at NT$25 each.
Among the eggs laid every year, “substandard ones” are removed, boiled in water and blended with tea, spices and soy sauce for those with an adventurous palate.