I’ve recently watched Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom, where we had this unforgettable dinner scene. And the question on everyone’s mind is if these are real meals? Obviously, the ones in the movie are fake, but do they exist? I’m here to break the menu down for you.
What’s on the menu? Well, here you have it:
- Gently Roasted vanAhira
- Coiled Wrigglies (Snake Surprise)
- Cristpy Coleoptera
- Soup of the Head
- Primate Parfait (Monkey brains)
I also added the scene so that you can rewatch this iconic scene.
Are the meals in Temple of Doom Dinner Scene real? The short answer is “No.” In the film, these weird meals were purely used for comedic purposes. Although some dishes are a delicacy in other countries. Or, others are cooked/eaten differently.
Temple of Doom Dinner Scene Breakdown
Gently Roasted vanAhira
The first course served at the Dinner scene of the Temple of doom was Gently Roasted vanAhira. That was maybe the most acceptable dish as it’s roast wild boar, presented with its roasted suckling offspring.
VanAhira stands for Wild Boar in Sanskrit’s language. In the film, it’s not very clear how the dish actually looks like, as we only get a small glimpse of it.
However, a lot of people eat wild boar. Is it a typical dish? No, but it’s not regarded as something gross. It’s a delicacy in many places throughout Europe.
Coiled Wrigglies (Snake Surprise)
The meal that everyone seems to remember is the big boa stuffed with live baby eels. The dish itself isn’t a real thing, but do people eat snakes?
Well yes, but India is mostly a land of snake-charmers, and some few tribes eat snakes. India is, in fact, not really a snake eating country, but others are in Asia. Countries like Vietnam, Hong Kong, China, Thailand, and the Philippines have snake dishes. Although, they all have different methods to eat and cook them. For example, in Vietnam, they eat a beating heart while in China, it’s mostly used for sake soup.
People do eat eels but mostly fried overall in the world. In some parts of Asia, eating live baby eels is a delicacy. So this dish could be partially true, except they don’t stuff it in a Boa.
Some fresh beetles with his delectable meltable innards, and it’s still its shell.
Well, people do eat beetles, but not like in Indiana Jones: Temple of Doom. In reality, people cook the beetles and eat them with the shell. They don’t open them up to eat their innards. And the edible beetles aren’t that big. Some people say that they taste like bacon.
The most commonly eaten beetles are the june, long-horned, and rhinoceros varieties.
Fun fact: in the film, the filling of the beetles was butter.
Soup of the Head
This soup contains various parts of the head of a sheep, especially the eyes.
In Iceland, a sheep’s head is a known Icelandic Dish. The dish is served with half a sheep’s head. Obviously, the fur is removed. Although the eyes aren’t removed.
Well, this isn’t actually a soup, of course. However, if people from Iceland can eat it, then it should be possible. But, people don’t eat in a soup.
Online, you can find various recipes for making a fun fake eyeball soup. It’s the perfect dish for Halloween. Click here for an example.
Primate Parfait (Monkey brains)
Who doesn’t remember the last dish with the monkey heads, where they all have to eat the brains. Disgusting.
In Africa and China, among others, the brain of chimpanzees and gorillas is considered a delicacy. In most countries, they eat it raw. Although the consumption of brains might be harmful to our health. So I won’t recommend to try it.
There are some urban legends that people ate monkey brains when they are still alive. But then again, these are urban legends, and I highly doubt that those would be true.
Fun fact: in the film, the filling of the apes brains was jelly.
I did a lot of research on this topic, and keep in mind that I’m not a food expert. This menu may not be real, but that doesn’t mean no-one can actually try to make it.
And please, don’t eat monkey brains. That’s just insane.
Thank you for writing this, it’s just what I was trying to find out!
It’s aaaaaalllllwwwwaaaayyyss China in the eeeewww meals category.
It depends where you are. Most places just smoke the meat over fire before selling it in the local markets. A reason why many animal species are endangered.