One of the great perks of being alive at this point in human history is we seem to have a relatively good understanding of food — which doesn’t mean we're necessarily heading in the right direction (junk food is rather self-destructive, after all), but through trial and error, we have gained a lot of wisdom. We know that steaming the bud of an otherwise intimidating thistle flower yields a delicious cooked artichoke and that beyond the menacing claw of a lobster awaits another delicacy.
And we can thank our foodie forefathers for discovering the things that can kill us. To those who discovered that belladonna and hemlock should not be eaten, we salute you. But we’re a funny bunch. Although our basic instinct is for survival, we continue to eat poisonous things — or parts of them at least. If you doubt that theory, consider the following foods. (Text: Melissa Breyer)