Sunday, September 27, 2009

Book: Butterflies in my Stomach

Butterflies in my Stomach, Ronald L. Taylor.

About the human consumption of insects, direct and indirect.

It also addresses our irrational food prejudices, e.g., most westerners are repelled by the idea of eating bee larvae, yet relish bee vomit (honey).

I can't really recommend slogging through most of the book but there were some interesting tidbits. Here's a six-sentence synopsis:

Humans, especially vegetarians, consume quite a lot of bugs without being fully aware of it. For example, the FDA permits up to 20 maggots per 100 grams of canned mushrooms, and ten insects plus 35 insect eggs per 8 ounces of raisins.

The most promising insects for use as food are termites, bee larvae and pupae, beetle grubs, grasshoppers, crickets, and almost any freshwater aquatic insects.

The legs, wings and heads may be pulled off. Roasting is the easiest way to cook them. They can be powdered and mixed with water or other foods if that's the only way you can keep them down.

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