“Tastes Like Chicken”


Jackson Landers investigates why chicken is such a pervasive taste across various meats:

Looking back … on the evolutionary tree, modern reptiles are related to chickens through a group of animals known as diapsids, which originated around 300 million years ago. Modern snakes and lizards are both descended from the diapsids—and as it happens, I have had the pleasure of eating a nice assortment of them: black spiny-tailed iguanas, green iguanas, and various snakes. What all of them had in common was a taste and a color after cooking that was like chicken, coupled with a texture reminiscent of crab meat. You wouldn’t mistake the texture of snake for chicken, but run it through a meat-grinder, and you wouldn’t know the difference. Another group of animals related to diapsids are the testudines: turtles and tortoises. Their exact evolutionary origins are murky, but what’s clear is that they taste like chicken.

(Photo by Flickr user etee)