Entomophagists are people who include bugs in their diet. While consuming insects is not for the faint of heart, there are some interesting recipes out there from various cultures which regularly incorporate bugs in their diet. Below is a list of ten unique insect dishes that you might want to try if you’re ever feeling adventurous or are simply looking for an additional source of protein.
1. BBQ Silkworm Chrysalises
These hard shelled pupa are a byproduct of the silk industry and are canned or sold by street vendors throughout Asia. They can be enjoyed deep-fried or barbecued. This Asian delicacy can be eaten whole or you can just enjoy the yellow meat inside, which smells like raw meat and tastes like tofu.
2. Mosquito Eggs and Tortillas
This Mexican delicacy involves drying and then roasting mosquito eggs prior to being served on a tortilla with a squeeze of lemon or lime. A small bottle of mosquito eggs is comparable to caviar at $50 a pop.
3. Katydid Texas & Thai Fusion
This dish combines Texas katydids with coconut oil, green onions, and Thai seasonings, with the concoction stuffed into mushroom caps to complete the exotic meal. Many people recommend removing the katydids’ legs, as they can be tough.
4. Cockroach Sushi
Cockroaches can be clean and completely edible as long as they’re fed fruit and veggies before being toasted. These common household pests can be toasted, sautéed, or boiled, but must not be eaten raw. One dish you can incorporate cockroaches into is sushi – these critters go great with rice. It is said that large, hissing cockroaches taste like and have a similar texture to greasy chicken.
5. Centipede or Millipede on a Stick
This snack is commonly sold by street vendors in China. While centipedes taste better, millipedes are more commonly used. Centipedes have to have their heads removed before cooking, since they use their pincers to bite, but the millipedes can be cooked with their heads intact. Millipedes on a stick are known to have a bland flavor, similar to a dry spaghetti noodle.
6. Waterbug Noodle Soup
Waterbugs and udon noodle soup is a popular dish in Taiwan, taking precedence over the traditional chicken noodle soup we enjoy in the U.S. Apparently waterbugs taste like a mixture of clams and potatoes. Who knew?
7. Chocolate Cricket Chip Cookies
This unique spin on chocolate chip cookies adds in crickets for a nutty flavor and crunchy texture. Crickets are enjoyed by people all over the world, and are known to have a roasted nut flavor, which makes them the perfect addition to chocolate chip cookies.
8. Fried Hornworms
Tomato and tobacco worms, also known as hornworms, have the distinct flavor of shrimp, crab, and green tomatoes when fried in oil. Although they must be put on a starvation diet for a few days prior to being eaten, since the plants they live off of are toxic for people to eat.
9. Tofu Grasshopper
Grasshoppers are a delicacy popular in Japan, Uganda, and Mexico, and are especially tasty when paired with tofu. Not all grasshoppers are edible, however – only solid colored ones can be eaten.
10. Chocolate Covered Scorpions
It’s hard to resist any treat that’s been dipped in chocolate – even scorpions. The toxins from these pests are rendered harmless once the creatures have been stir-fried or just plain fried in hot oil. It is said that scorpions taste like shrimp, and are extra tasty when dipped in chocolate.
It takes someone with a lot of courage to try these dishes, but if you have an adventurous spirit you may just discover that you love them!
About the author: Chris is a blogger for a el paso pest control company. He hasn’t tried eating insects yet, other than the occasional fly from a too-wide yawn, but he’d really like to try. Especially chocolate covered ones.