Andrew Zimmern dishes on two 'bizarre foods' he thinks everyone should try

AOL Build Speaker Series - Andrew Zimmern, 'Bizarre Foods'
AOL Build Speaker Series - Andrew Zimmern, 'Bizarre Foods'

Andrew Zimmern spent four long years trying to sell his idea for "Bizarre Foods" to a network before landing happily at the Travel Channel. Now, a breakout success, the show is readying to premiere its eighth season.

In episode one, Zimmern kicks things off with a trip to Kazakhstan, which he says is one of his favorite shows to date. Not only did he find it "staggeringly beautiful," but he was also able to enjoy one of his favorite delicacies: horse meat.

"I love horse meat, and I love the fat of horse meat," he shares. "It's very, very clean and good for you, and I just had a fantastic eating time there."

And he really stands by this obsession. In fact, he thinks everyone should try it at least once before they die.

"I'd love everybody to try some of the 'more exotic hoofed animals,'" he offers. Horse and donkey meat are two that he thinks would translate well for Americans. "I think it would convince people that we need to expand our diet, and that beef in this country is maybe not everything it's cracked up to be in terms of a red meat."

In an ideal world, he'd also love for everyone to try the giraffe beetle found in Madagascar. "It's a bug that when you shut your eyes and you eat it, you're like, 'Oh my God, this is so delicious. What is it?'" he explains. "You open your eyes. It changes the direction of your life because all of a sudden you stop practicing contempt prior to investigation. And so I think foods that sort of stop us in our tracks ... are the ones I would want people to try."

While he gushed about horse meat and giraffe beetles, he hasn't loved every food he's been offered on his travels for the show.

"I've denied food twice. Both times, as a lifelong culinarian, I knew that it was going to put me in the hospital, not just get me sick," he explains. "There was some rotted poultry intestines that someone had cooked and tried to serve me in a market in the Philippines during the first year that we were making the show, and I could tell that these animals were sick animals. It was just going to get me very ill."

See what Zimmern eats (or turns down) this season. The host takes on a range of new dangers, new foods and new adventures on the new season of "Bizarre Foods," premiering Monday, April 13 at 9 p.m. EST.

Check out Zimmern's top Instagrams:

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