HOME > Chowhound > General Topics >

Discussion

Crickets for Spanish class food project?

  • m

Hi, my name is Matt Sullivan. I'm 11 years old and I have a question about eating crickets. In Spanish class, we are dong a project on Spanish food and I wanted to know if people in Mexico eat crickets and how they cook them. Also is there such a thing as chocolate covered crickets in Mexico? We live in Boyce, Virginia, and I want to know if there is any stores where we can buy crickets close by, because I want to cook them for my project. And how do I do that?
Sincerely, Matt Sullivan

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
Delete
  1. Here's an article about eating bugs in Mexico
    http://www.livescience.com/strangenew...

    By the way there is a distinction between Spanish food and Mexican food. The one is from Spain, the other from Mexico. But for a Spanish language class, I suspect either would be fine.

    On cable Travel Channel there is a program called Bizarre Foods. In the Mexico episode Andrew ate bugs. He also had a Spain episode, but I don't recall that he ate bugs there. In another Spanish speaking country, Ecuador, he ate large grubs in the Amazon jungle.

    paulj

    2 Replies
    1. re: paulj

      I'm not sure were Boyce is, Matt, but if you're anywhere near DC you might want to check out Oyamel. They have crickets on the menu and they might be able to put you in touch with their supplier.

      http://www.oyamel.com

      1. re: nc213

        The chef/owner of Oyamel is from Spain, but the theme of the restaurant is Mexican.

        The bug dish is:
        "Taco de Chapulines
        The legendary oaxacan speciality of sautéed grasshoppers, served with shallots, garlic and tequila $4.50"

    2. Hi Matt,
      The only bugs I've ever seen on a Mexican menu were chapulines in Oaxaca, which is the Mexican word for grasshopper (the word in Spain is saltamontes). But it's entirely possible crickets are eaten somewhere in Mexico. Generally you can get crickets in stores that sell lizards and snakes. I looked around on the web and Winchester Aquarium and Pet Center on Costello Drive in Winchester might be worth contacting.

      I suppose there could be a distinction between different kinds of crickets, however, so you might check and be sure you have the edible kind, whatever that means, before you chow down.

      1. I saw Salma Hayek eat crickets on the Ellen DeGeneres Show last year. She had a bowl of cooked crickets, put them into a flour tortilla, added some salsa, or maybe it was a pico de gallo, and ate them that way. She said they were very popular in Mexico. Ellen tried a few, without the tortilla or sauce.

        Here is a link to get you started:

        http://www.honeybird.net/chapulines.html

        1. Hey Matt,

          Today's NY Times Magazine has a piece on entomophagy, which is the upscale word for eating bugs. It almost sounds like it's going to be the latest new thing (yuck). Anyway, here's a link: www.nytimes.com/2008/02/10/magazine/1.... If it doesn't work (I'm not sure whether you have to be able to log in), go to NYTimes.com and search "entomophagy," or google it, sometimes you can get in that way.

          1. Matt,
            If you decide to cook crickets for your project, call some bait shops. Some fisherman use them. Might be hard right now since it's winter, but they might have them.
            Good luck and happy crunching!

            1 Reply
            1. re: MakingSense

              Thanks for all the good tips guys,I hope I can use it all... and good luck to what ever you do next.

            2. If you have a chance, watch the New York episode of Bizarre Foods with Andrew Zimmern, Travel Channel. Andrew visits a specialist in eating bugs (about 35 minutes in). Included was a terriaki injected cockroach.
              paulj

              1. it seems to me that there have been media warnings about children eating grasshoppers imported from Mexico. They had extremely high levels of lead. So whatever insects you chose to work with, try to get ones that are not treated with any kind of chemicals!

                1. Hi Matt, Obviously there is a lot of information on the internet about entomophagy, "eating bugs". The best information you can get is from someone who eats them and enjoys them. Believe it or not, there are a lot of us. Yes, I am one of those people. If you can find some crickets at a local pet store that has reptiles, buy some since they are rather cheap there. The first thing you will want to do is purge them. What this means is, put a piece of apple into your cricket container and let them eat for 24 hours to 48 hours to get anything out of their system. Then you will be ready to dispatch them. Thats the polite way to say that you are about to "kill those little buggers". Take your container of your soon to be "crispy critters" and put them into the freezer for about 15-20 minutes until they are dead, but not frozen. After that, they will be ready to be cooked any way you want to. You can saute them and put them into tacos, or dry them in a 200 degree oven until crisp. You can then grind them up and use them as a dry topping for seasoning, or add them to cookies or breads. You'll find on the web, a decent recipe for "Chocolate Chirpee Cookies" where you can leave them whole. Now , if you want to cook them in the style of a Oaxacan snack, simply deep fry freshly dispatched crickets in hot oil until crispy. Drain, and while still hot, season with a mixture of salt, garlic (powdered will do just fine), lime, and cayenne or chili powder. Enjoy!

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: tcali319

                    oh my lord! i cant imagine the taste!...can you plz elaborate on taste?

                    does it taste like exoskeleton? plz tell

                    1. re: Echotraveler

                      I used to work with lots of Mexican natives and one of them gave me some crickets to try. They were cooked in a pan with tons of chile. All I could taste was salt and chiles. The texture was sort of odd and they laughed at me because I guess I was supposed to remove the legs before eating them.