(Me, trying to munch a grasshopper)
I grew up in a family that runs food business, my mum is a native of the culinary capital of the Philippines, my brother a culinary graduate, and me with a degree of Hotel and Restaurant Management we know what’s good and bad tasting food. We were a great food critics when were dining out, discussing what’s the dish’s ingredients missing.
Never thought in my life I would be daring enough to try bizarre food although I have small hints here and there growing up as I have tried strange food here growing up, intentionally and not like fried little frogs when I was 8. Accidentally ate a dog kinilaw (broiled dog, chopped, and mixed with chopped onions, chilis, salt, and vinegar)normally eaten in drinking sessions, that tasted good though, but I hated it when I found out it was dog’s meat and my uncles started laughing! Carabao meat stew, horse meat stew, goat stewed in tomato soup, balut, one day old chick,and curried snails. Yet, it never occured to me that I will be up for eating bugs until I started backpacking.
In Cambodia, if was not in transit, I know I will try their friend Tarantulas. It looks freaky alive and dude, they’re deadly! But they looked okay when they’re cooked, so I thought I can give it a try if I was not in transit just in case I would need to rush in the toilet. That’s their delicacy.
In Thailand, it wasn’t my first time to see the fried bugs in Bangkok (it’s my 4th or 5th time to roam around the city) but because they looked like the way they are alive, I am not that gutsy to try. Until a little peer pressure from Dougly came , that moment he saw the lady with the cart of fried bugs he was delighted and I thought “Uh oh…”. Doug bought a scoop of grasshoppers and I was a little hesitant. He volunteered to eat one first, and so it was my turn. I wasn’t sure if I was ready or not, but I thought Thai people eats it and they’re alive, this is not my everyday food so why not? Trying to psyche myself to eat it, I took my first bite. “Crrrunch… crrrunch…crrrunch” as I chew the grasshopper’s head, Doug was quiet and I know he was trying to conceal a laugh! It tasted like soy saucy, crunchy chips with a weird form in your mouth but its not bad, although we didn’t eat it all. I ate two, I think Doug ate three or four, I’m not sure. It was cool trying new things like that, but it’s definitely bizarre. I could do the other bugs the lady’s selling…cockroaches, scorpions, worms, crickets.. Maybe I can do ants, but I’m overwhelmed with grasshopper already.
I don’t know what I would try next time, as the saying goes… “You’ll never know…” What about you? How strange would you go for your taste?