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How long before insects become a (more) common menu item?

ipsedixit Jun 16, 2013 07:22 PM

As common as, say, offals or sweetbreads are today?

In other words, selectively common but not widespread mainstream common.

5 years? 10? Less? More?


  1. n
    NekoNekoFancyPants Jun 21, 2013 10:13 PM

    Isn't it already pretty common in our processed meats? Mmm hot dogs. :)

    Joking aside I'd say for it to be common in the west it would have to be in processed form, due to our increasing disconnect with what we actually eat. Heck some kids have never even seen/eaten real chicken only processed 'nuggets'. Most people have no idea what they are actually eating on a daily basis. And realistically it might be a good option for our processed food products. Is bug larva any worse then pink slime?

    1. al b. darned Jun 20, 2013 10:38 AM

      Hopefully never! Yeah, yeah I know they're supposed to be loaded with protein, but no matter how much Andrew Zimmern tells me how tasty they are, I'm not buying it. (Figuratively and literally.) Especially when he describes how they *really* taste.

      While offals and sweetbreads are more common at some places (though not at the places where I dine) they, along with the subject insects, will continue to be on my "No, thank you." list.

      1 Reply
      1. re: al b. darned
        Sam Salmon Jun 21, 2013 10:01 PM

        Not in my lifetime or the lifetime of anyone reading this.

        Name a culture that has continued to eat insects after they've started to gain material wealth-Mexico and Chapulines come to mind-the economy is booming and bugs are off the menu except in the poorest parts of the south.

        There was a high end restaurant here in Vancouver who tried to introduce insects but then backed down after being mocked by customers-even the Staff were revolted-there's a famous photo of one of the kitchen staff holding a bug encrusted Chapati and looking disgusted.

        One thing about Crabs & Prawns-there's actually meat on them-one need not crunch the shells with one's teeth to extract food quite unlike Chapulines.

      2. m
        mwhitmore Jun 17, 2013 08:37 PM

        On another thread, some Hounds eat indoors to avoid them. But another way to look at it is: we already are. Bread and all processed plant food have a USDA-required maximum bug content. Which means that consumers *are* consuming at least a minimum bug content.

        1. m
          mpjmph Jun 17, 2013 09:18 AM

          We already eat crustaceans and mollusks. I don't get the aversion to insects.

          5 Replies
          1. re: mpjmph
            sedimental Jun 17, 2013 09:37 AM

            A crustacean has never crawled across my face in the middle of the night and made me jump :)

            1. re: sedimental
              Veggo Jun 17, 2013 09:51 AM

              But you would if it did.

              1. re: sedimental
                mpjmph Jun 17, 2013 11:36 AM

                Never passed out on the beach, huh?

              2. re: mpjmph
                Bkeats Jun 17, 2013 12:48 PM

                My thoughts exactly. There's a reason that crabs/lobster are called bugs in some places.

                1. re: Bkeats
                  ipsedixit Jun 17, 2013 03:17 PM

                  They're just roaches of the sea.

              3. h
                Harters Jun 17, 2013 08:19 AM

                This may depend on the definition of "more common".

                Ants (live) were on the menu at Noma in Denmark last year, and with food fashions being what they are, surely it won't be long before others are copying the "best" restaurant in the world.

                1. s
                  sedimental Jun 16, 2013 10:15 PM

                  It is probably going to happen, but I bet they start showing up as an ingredient in a common processed food......watch out for arachnidsaccaride in your wheaties.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: sedimental
                    mpjmph Jun 17, 2013 09:17 AM

                    Dehydrated ground grubs instead of soy to increase the amount of protein in cereal and snack bars - I'm lookin' at you Special K.

                  2. Veggo Jun 16, 2013 07:46 PM

                    You reminded me of a cartoon I enjoyed decades ago. A prince's wish for a frog to turn into a voluptuous princess comes true, and in the next frame they are in a fancy restaurant and the former frog, now princess, says to the waiter " I'll have a plate of dead flies, please."

                    1. Veggo Jun 16, 2013 07:39 PM

                      I'm having smoked sweetbreads tomorrow for dinner, sans winged critters. With chimichurri.
                      To your query, more than 10, or when I expire would be my hope. I'll leave the hard work to the frogs and bats.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: Veggo
                        ipsedixit Jun 16, 2013 07:46 PM

                        C'mon V!

                        I, for one, hope you subsist for longer than 10 years.

                        I'll even eat all of your bugs for you.

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