The Bug Buffet

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Wednesday night I got a chance to listen to author David George Gordon talk about eating bugs. After the talk, I joined the bug buffet and ate some bugs myself. I’ve owned the 1998 edition of his Eat-A-Bug Cookbook for a few years now. At the event, I learned a new and expanded 2013 edition was released.

The Eat-a-Bug Cookbook, Revised: 40 Ways to Cook Crickets, Grasshoppers, Ants, Water Bugs, Spiders, Centipedes, and Their Kin
The Eat-a-Bug Cookbook, Revised: 40 Ways to Cook Crickets, Grasshoppers, Ants, Water Bugs, Spiders, Centipedes, and Their Kin by David George Gordon

I didn’t buy the new version. Although I have zero issues with eating bugs, sourcing them has always been a challenge. With the exception of silkworm larvae (aka “ground cucumber”), which is sold in the Vietnamese grocery stores, I have not seen any insects sold anywhere near Seattle. For the record, I’ve been up and down the aisles of most Asian grocery stores from Lynnwood to Federal Way.

bugs650

The 2 on the stick tasted like sauce. The locust (upper left) had no flavor. The mealworms (upper right) were the best. They did have a slight crunch. The real little ones in the flan (bottom left) were so small and covered with sugar that I couldn’t taste them. None were as good as my bug soup.

My hunch is to make this way of eating sustainable and affordable, one would have to start home ranching. Even the package of silkworm larvae costs $3.50. Considering how few calories a package has, it really isn’t worth buying for anything more than a novelty in the United States.

8 thoughts on “The Bug Buffet

  1. @Roberta – The author mentioned the Aztec bars in his presentation and confirmed they used (I think) 6 full bugs in each bar.

  2. Mark

    MAS – Have you tried Petco? You can buy meal worms there. We feed and breed them for our chickens. No reason why you can’t nibble on them, yourself?

  3. Norlee

    I also have zero issues with you eating bugs… as for myself I would have to be really really hungry or drunk. probably both… yikes!

  4. J. Scott Shipman

    Michael, I’ve been with you on lots of “out-of-the-mainstream” diet ideas; will have to take a pass on bugs.

    But thanks for the post!

  5. Mark

    MAS – One more thing…No telling what Petco feeds the critters – most definitely not organic…What I would do is use the mealworms that you buy at Petco as ‘seed stock’..You can raise them and subsequent generations on an organic wheat bran substrate…There are resources on the web that explain the how-tos. I’d poke around on ‘backyardchickens.com’ for more info on raising your ‘herd’.

    Cheers – Mark

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