Appears in

Oxford Companion to Food

Oxford Companion to Food

By Alan Davidson

Published 2014

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bats flying mammals of the order of Chiroptera, are mentioned in the Bible among the unclean animals which the children of Israel were not supposed to eat, and this fact alone suggests that they must be edible and tempting. In fact the fruit-eating bats of India and SE Asia, and other places such as Mauritius, although taboo to the Hindus as well as the Jews, are widely eaten. They are clean animals living exclusively on fruit, and have a taste which has been compared (like so much other exotic animal fare) to that of chicken.