Cicada Recipes: Bugs Are Low-Carb, Gluten-Free Food

Those of us in Eastern US have a noisy exuberance of free food till July.

Blanched, boiled, or candied, cicadas are a healthy snack, experts say.

... beady-eyed, shrimp-size cicadas currently emerging from the ground in the eastern United States.

... high in protein, low in fat, and low in carbohydrates ...

Cicadas spend most of their lives underground sucking sap from tree roots. The plant-based diet gives them a green, asparagus-like flavor, especially when eaten raw or boiled, according to Kristky, who prefers his Brood II bugs blanched and tossed into a leafy green salad like chunks of chicken.

The descriptions and pictures suggest that they're eaten shell and all, unlike shrimp or crayfish. Eating shells doesn't appeal to me.

Anybody here planning a culinary adventure?

Tags: eating cicadas

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Replies to This Discussion

Ruth, are you seeing very many, yet?  I don't know if we are going to get very many here in Florida.  I haven't been hearing them although we get a few all along.

Saw where they are having swarms in Fredericksburg, Virginia.

Not I, thank you very mucy. The first time I saw a cicada was when we lived in Bathesda, MD for two years and the 17 year batch hatched. They scared me thoroughly until I learned about them. Then they were very interesting to watch. My three children were four years old at the time and cicadas became our friends, just like the opossom that startled me. Having curious little ones, I had to resist my fear and learn about such strange creatures, how to be appropriately cautious, and then to appreciate and respect them. They encountered their fist experience with death when a friendly, wild squirrel was run over. All three kids had lots of questions why Squirrel didn't run up the tree and chatter at them.

My father used to fry small fish very crisp and eat them bones and all and then you eat soft shelled crabs shell and all.

I remember my father frying small fish very crisp and us eating them all.  I liked them that way.

When I was growing up we ate smelt that way.

Thanks. Now I have "Glory of Love" stuck in my head. ^^;

I'm not sure if I could get used to eating bugs. It's like... if they're mudbugs or sea-bugs, that's one thing, but it's hard to imagine them tasting good if they're land-based... Don't they need shelling, at least? Like shrimp?

This article is less sanguine about eating cicada.  They point out that eating something that has been in the ground for 17 year might absorb pesticides.  I don't know the answer to that.  Probably no worse than eating  other stuff.

It points out the cop out of "ask your doctor".  I can see doctors taking time all across the Eastern Seaboard taking time out of their schedules to discuss cicada eating....   and I doubt that many, if any, doctors know anything about the safety of eating cicadas.

In Alaska, I netted for Hooligan, Smelt, with Athabascan Indians. We fried them and ate them like home made French fried potato or dried them by smoke fire. They also called them candle sticks and used them dried as candles. We cut down Black spruce trees, these slow growing trees are adapted to wet and acidic soils where they don’t have to compete with their faster growing relatives the white spruce. We stripped off the branches with knives, threaded a net along the length of the tree and tied a sinew strip so we could toss the tree with net out into the river, and pull it back. My Indian friends brought in great numbers of Hooligan and my net was empty. It seems I was too neat with stringing my net. They bunched theirs all up making a thick net through which the fish could not penetrate. That worked for me. We then laid the Hooligan over the spruce trees we cut and dried and smoked them. I can't find a photo of the Hooligan net like we used, so you will have to use your imagination. 

I lived at Wildwood Station Army Radio Receiver Site, three miles outside Kenai, a small fishing village of about 9,000 population, mostly Athabascan Indians and homesteaders. Now, with the oil depot and huge fishing operation, the population is over 50,000. With new, gargantuan fishing nets, the Hooligan population crashed. The simple native process enabled wildlife to sustain itself. No longer so. 

Joan, I hope you are writing your autobiography.  I want to be the first to buy a copy.

Yeah, you've had so many adventures.

I have a feeling most atheists have had great adventures because we are adventuresome people to embrace atheism in the first place.

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