In their latest attempt to convince squeamish Western palates that insects are edible food sources, Danish chefs from a culinary research center have released a video in which they boil, slice and sauté a fat, juicy cockroach and serve it up for breakfast.
Uploaded this week, the latest video from the Nordic Food Lab led by world-renowned Copenhagen restaurant Noma, shows chefs dropping a large, hard-shelled cockroach, supposedly fed on split peas, black currants and chamomile, into a pot of boiling water.
The specimen is then split open, and added to a pan of what appears to be slices of simmering root vegetables (details are sparse).
But even the chefs who cooked it seem trepidatious about sampling their latest concoction as the video shows them taking dainty bites.
It’s the latest video out of the Nordic Food Lab in the lead-up to a London dinner party at the Pestival Festival at the end of the month, an annual event that pays homage to our multi-legged, winged and bug-eyed friends.
For £50 (about $77), diners will munch on insect canapés and other courses featuring insects as the main ingredient.
Scientists have long been touting insects as a protein-packed meat alternative that could help meet the world’s growing food demand.
While the practice of eating insects, or entomophagy, may be unsettling for Western palates, the UN says that different species of beetles, ants, bees, grasshoppers and crickets are eaten in 29 countries across Asia, 23 countries in the Americas, and 36 countries in Africa.
In Thailand alone, 200 different insect species are consumed and are commonly sold as street snacks throughout the country.
According to the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization, some insects contain twice the protein of raw meat and fish, while others, particularly in their larval stage, are also rich in fat, vitamins and minerals.