Is eating balut or anchovies wrong?


Hello brother,

I read this post as part of my research and study: Was eating blood only wrong because it was associated with idolatry? We've also been teaching this in our local congregation, and I agree with everything that you wrote here.

As mentioned, I'm doing my research because I came across a question that I am not able to answer just yet. Here in the Philippines, we have a popular "dish" called Balut. It's a boiled, unhatched duck egg. I've always taught and stood that it is also forbidden because of the blood in it. Recently, I received a question: What about anchovies? In preparing those tiny fish for cooking, we don't bleed them one by one. Same with other similar animals. I understand this may be a strange question to you, brother, since we do have weird dishes here (we make patties out of those anchovies!😅) than what you have over there in the States.

I hope you will be able to shed some light on this for me from the Scriptures, I want to grow more in my knowledge and rightly divide the word of truth concerning items like these.


Balut is made from a developing bird's egg. Since the embryo in the egg has a beating heart, even though it has not developed enough to live outside of the egg, it is still life with blood. The cooking process is no different than cooking a strangled animal -- the blood is not drained. "For it seemed good to the Holy Spirit and to us to lay upon you no greater burden than these essentials: that you abstain from things sacrificed to idols and from blood and from things strangled and from fornication; if you keep yourselves free from such things, you will do well" (Acts 15:28-29).

With anchovies, it depends on how the fish is processed. Typically they are gutted and sometimes the heads are removed. Both would cause a draining of the blood.

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