searching for mezcal worms
I've been searching the web in vain for the dried worms that go into Mezcal. Can't find them anywhere. Has anyone seen them? If I can. Thanks!
I had them and didn't especially care for them. Where are you located and just out of curiosity, what do you want to do with them?
I had them in a small community about an hour out of Oaxaca. If there are any Oaxacan restaurants near you, that might be a stating place. I have not seen them offered in the U.S., but someone might be importing them.
Good Morning DD. You know, I've never actually had one, tho the Sal de Gusano sounds a likely place for me to start. My son owns a Mexican restaurant in NH & we want them for his bar. The liquor distributors no longer have access to them .The only places in Mexico I have visited are in the Baja. I will look for Oaxahan Restaurants. Thanks!
I beleive there are 2 types of "worms", gusanjo rojo and maguey, or chinicuil, worm. Both are actually larva of varieties of moths. Look for a vendor who deals in agave moths, if any. You might find a SE Mexico vendor for picudo de agave, which is the weezil larva that infests agave plants. These are typically roasted for eating though.
GrammySue, it's worth noting that there are different kinds of mezcal on the market. The worms are generally put into the most rotgut mezcales to give tourists a thrill. Fine mezcal, of which there are a growing number of varieties, isn't bottled with a worm.
However, maguey worms, both the red ones and the chinicuil, are prepared using various recipes and eaten as delicacies. Sal de gusano, usually served with oranges in slices or chunks to accompany fine mezcal, is prepared with dried and ground red maguey worms, ground sea salt, and powdered chile de árbol.
I only know one place in Mexico City where live maguey worms (the kind you need) and sal de gusano are for sale. It might be difficult to find them in the States, but as DD mentioned, a Oaxacan restaurant might give you helpful suggestions.
You can buy sal de gusano at La Oaxaqueña puesto in Tijuana's Mercado Hidalgo. Look for the open basket of fresh huitlacoche and ask at that counter for it. It is extremely expensive, one peso per gram ($37.80 a pound), and comes in 30-gram packets.