by Guy Hand
I’m blaming it on cartoons:
In Steamboat Willie, the short that kicked off the Golden Age of Animation in 1928, a dastardly goat ate Minnie Mouse’s ukulele and sheet music. In 1943, Daffy Duck defended an America scrap pile from a tin can-eating Nazi goat. In the '60s, Robert Crumb’s Mr. Natural tried to fight off goaty prejudices. Today, Homer Simpson and the boys of South Park are still having issues with the horned and goateed little devils.
No wonder goats have a bad rap in America.
Even the goat’s recent good press—its environmentally friendly knack for mowing through acres of noxious weeds—is merely a variant on the I’ll-eat-anything mythology that got the animal erroneously linked to tin cans and cartoons in the first place.
What we Americans don’t get about goat—which the rest of the world does—is that goat is also delicious.
“Approximately 65 percent of the red meat consumed globally is goat meat,” according to the Snake River Meat Goat Association (yep, there’s a local goat-meat association).
In the Wednesday, Nov. 16, issue of BW, I go on a goat-tasting expedition—trying everything from Jamaican jerked goat to Afghani yogurt-marinaded goat to Italian goat meatballs with goat cheese—and survive to report on the gastronomic state of goat in Idaho.