Monday, November 13, 2006

Chocolate, mmmmm

Having exposed my ignorance of chocolate-covered crickets on Serena's blog I feel I owe it to Rex - and the world - to put it right.

So I've done a little research and this is what I discovered on
BBC h2g2.

"Insects are on a par with shellfish in providing high-quality protein and are a good source of other nutrients such as iron, calcium and B vitamins. There's a much higher chance of catching a disease from a mammal than an insect. Nobody is ever likely to suffer from 'mad grasshopper disease'. When you consider how livestock such as chickens and pigs are treated with antibiotics and sometimes raised in less than ideal conditions, insect meals become quite appealing.

"Earthworms are 70% protein and soaking them in water overnight will purge them of soil. Fly larvae - or maggots - are rich in calories and protein. Scoop them off decomposed meat, wash in cold water, boil and they're ready to eat. Crickets can be an excellent and healthy alternative to meat. 100g of crickets contains 12g of protein and only 5.5g of fat. 100g of beef has more protein - 18 percent - but also has 18 percent fat.

"A greater tolerance towards insects would be good for our health. If we didn't mind the odd worm in an apple or object to greens obviously munched by insects, the farmer could reduce the levels of pesticides, substances that are potentially of much greater threat to our health.

"Virtually everything we eat has bugs (entire or parts) within. US regulations allow for 75 insect fragments per 50g of wheat flour, two maggots per 100g of tomato sauce or pizza, and so on. It's estimated that the average person consumes about a kilo of insects a year. And is all the healthier for it.

"Chocolate chippie chip cookies (with dry-roasted crickets), banana worm bread - there are many creative ways to take insect protein. For the squeamish the answer is to crush or use a blender on your insects and cook in a stew to disguise their appearance. The bible for bug eaters is The Eat-A-Bug Cookbook by David George Gordon, also author of The Complete Cockroach."

So next time Younger Son says, 'What's for dinner?' I'll send him out into the garden in search of a high-protein low-fat ant or two.


Anonymous said...

One of the true tests of Girl Scout-hood was the willingness to catch 3"+ grasshoppers, roast them over the campfire, dip them in chocolate, and eat. It was then I realized that ANYthing dipped in chocolate tasted A-OK!

Liz said...

That's useful to know.

Welshcakes Limoncello said...

Very interesting. I don't think I'll be trying them yet, though, even coated in chocolate! Happy birthday for yesterday, too.

Anonymous said...

Yuck! I suppose I'm doomed to go through life as one of the Protein-Deficient. Presumably, there's a little in chocolate. Lord, I hope so. LOL.

steve said...

I'm not big on chocolate, but the roasted grasshoppers sound delecious. (Grin)

jomoore said...

I refuse to try lentils, so there'd be no chance of getting me to try an insect, chocolate covered or not! If you need protein and chocolate, go for peanut M&Ms!

Anonymous said...

You see I think people who can eat Prawns/lobster etc should be able to eat insects because prawn are simply sea insects aren't they?

Anonymous said...

HA! I should have checked back....Eating the chocolate covered crickets was seminal moment in my young life....One I shall never forget......

and never attempt again....

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