Those of you who are already used to me know, at this stage in the game, that one of the main traits of my own personality –maybe the most outstanding- is the huge curiosity I always feel about EVERYTHING. Other people’s lives not included!
So, driven by such powerful spur, I have enrolled in a Nutrition & Dietetics degree at an online university, starting next October.
To warm up the engines I have already read some current topics in Nutrition and Health and I inform you that, in a few years, we will be eating insects, larvae and worms by the load. Nothing new. Some supermarkets already sell them. Carrefour, for instance. Do these bugs make you sick? I don’t know why.
When I was a kid I used to eat lots of garden snails, cooked in a garlic-parsley sauce, a typical dish in the town where I was born. Is a snail less disgusting than any worm? Or than a prawn? Or than a dead frog’s leg? Remove the shell and look carefully at the horns. Let’s see if you have got the guts to keep on eating stony-faced.
What makes us sick is a cultural issue. The only thing you need to eat anything is to have been born in in a certain region of the world or/and to be hungrier than a bear
Back in the 70s, when the Uruguayan Flight 571 crashed into the Andes, I, who at that time was a little girl, could never understand the stir it caused when people knew that the survivors had eaten their dead to survive. I WOULD HAVE DONE THE SAME THING. Does it matter? Hunger is always reason enough. None of us, in this opulent society, has ever been really hungry. Under extreme conditions anybody normal would eat his father up alive to survive. Another, very different thing is to deliberately kill a living human to eat him up. I could hesitate on that issue, but it all depends. If the food-to-be is a completely stranger and I don’t even like him, I wouldn’t discard the idea of setting him up and broil him over a bonfire.
I can’t know a priori, in ideal conditions, near my fridge, what I could do thrust into an extreme situation. I could adopt a dignified attitude, exemplary and very humane, Saint Thérèse style, moralizing everybody, but I would be lying to you.
Now, I go back to the topic idea: there’s nothing left to do but get used to cricket- flour cookies. Food industry, always so concerned about us, consumers, and our health, will try its best to make all sorts of filthy bugs appear tasty and delicious.
So, it will do what it always does to guarantee sales: to conceal very cunningly the raw material covering it up with lots and lots of SUGAR, the number-one ingredient, hidden under many different names. Sugar has a collection of names bigger than Jesus Christ’s in the Bible. It is the mole in modern Western diets, always the primary ingredient on the ingredient list in ultra-processed foods.
Scarfing up a cricket, just like that, with its legs, its wings, its antenna…this is only for champions. Let alone if you know Pinocchio’s tale. But if they are ground and baked in the form of little cookies, that’s a different story.
Cockroach Nutella? Why not? I have just made it up but it is perfectly possible. Grasshopper quiche, spider piroshky, ladybug caviar…
And for the bolder ones I suggest caramel-topped Asian hornet custard: a fanciful dessert made with Asian giant hornets. When they are alive their stingers inject fast-acting venom, which is deadly and can dissolve tissue.
Enjoy your meal!