Indigirka Salad, a Russian fish salad that originated in Yakutia, the coldest inhabited region in the world, was recently voted the worst dish in the world by the readers of online food guide Taste Atlas.
Indigirka is a rather simple dish – it consists of diced whitefish such as broad whitefish, elma, and muksun combined with onions, and seasoned with oil, salt, and pepper. That doesn’t sound so bad, right? Well, at least not so bad as other dishes we’ve featured on Oddity Central in the past. The problem with Indigirka salad is that the fish is not only raw, but frozen solid, which is to be expected from a dish born in a region where temperatures routinely drop below -70 degrees Celsius. The dish is usually served as an appetizer, accompanied by lemon wedges and a shot of vodka.
With an average user score of 1.4 on cultural food guide Taste Atlas, Indigirka Salad was crowned the worst dish in the world, beating even pungent Norse dishes like hakarl and surströmming. It’s unclear why Indigirka had such a bad score, but that definitely didn’t sit well with the people of Yakutia, many of whom took offense at having a local delicacy crowned the worst dish in the world.
Russian vlogger Ilya Varlamov took to YouTube to defend Indigirka Salad as a delightful dish that pairs great with vodka, while others claimed to have never tasted a tastier food in their lives. Since Taste Atlas published its ranking of the world’s worst dishes, Indigirka’s rating has improved to 2.1 stars on the online guide.
Indigirka Salad is believed to have been invented in the mid 20th century by chef Innokenty Tarbakhov, and named after the Indigirka River, one of the major Yakutian rivers.
For more unappetizing dishes, make sure to check out the scary-looking Japanese alien dumplings made with Warusobo, the ‘alien of the Ariake Sea’.