Sam Fujisaka has taken down his share of bugs, including deep-fried beetles. The beetles he enjoyed are the adults of a grub species that infests the rice and maize crops in Mindanao, the Philippines. The grubs eat the roots, but every year or two, they suicidally swarm in selected trees of a single species. People knock the adult beetles out of the trees and deep-fry them—and, indeed, they’re delicious. “The legs and antenna fall away, leaving a crispy and crunchy bite of deep-fried goodness,” says Sam Fujisaka. “And the rice and maize farmers get a measure of futile revenge.”

The commonly eaten insects of Mexico are even better, says Sam Fujisaka. Eat_Nopal likes escamoles, giant ant eggs sautéed in butter with epazote. They’re delicious in a similar way to roe and caviar, with a soft texture and a subtle, almost buttery flavor. Little Oaxacan grasshoppers have a smoky, nutty flavor; jumiles (beetles) are fruity and herbal. Jumiles have the distinction of commonly being eaten alive in tacos.

Deep-fried grasshoppers in Thailand taste like overdone french fries that have no insides left, says thew. And moh has had some great stir-fried grasshoppers with ginger and sesame, with an excellent, crunchy mouthfeel but not much flavor. They are like tofu in that they pick up the flavors of the seasonings without adding much flavor of their own, says moh.

Board Link: Ever eat a bug?

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