My latest Vermont Public Radio commentary on enjoying food. Yes, it is about eating bugs and the picture above is of Japanese beetles being boiled in salted water for 2 full minutes before being tossed with a little oil and salt and baked on a cookie sheet for 50 minutes in a 250-degree oven.
The result is an airy snack with a crunch that is reminiscent of thin Lays potato chips. Unlike what you might expect, the final texture is, in fact, tremendously appealing. The flavor of the beetles on their own is of roasted mushrooms, but much more delicate than actual roasted mushrooms. You can easily spice them however you want.
So, put aside what the food is and think about this from a culinary perspective: If you had an ultra-light, slightly crunchy food with a delicate roast mushroom flavor, how would you use it? On an antipasto tray alongside dry cured sausages and olives? Tossed with sun dried tomatoes and fettucine? Alongside popcorn that’s been tossed in olive oil and a spice mix for a classy bar snack? Just salted, by the handful, with beer?
Let’s not knock it ’til you try it (or at least listen to the commentary).
Enjoying Food – Aired on VPR 8/19/14
Want to read more on this topic?
- United Nations Report on Edible Insects
- Has Meat Met Its Match? from Ensia (I believe insects still count as meat, but nice alliteration)
- Food By the Numbers: Insects from National Geographic: Future of Food Series
- Peter Menzel: Man Eating Bugs – I have the book, which I would recommend; here are some of the online images.