The Asian Culture Club Ate What…?

On Tuesday, the Asian Culture Club ventured forth to try an alternative form of dining. Lisa Sanchez, a Lancaster County Park Naturalist, visited Mr. Brian Fisher’s room during flex to teach the Asian Culture Club about the kinds of insects, which insects are edible, what bugs taste like, and how they are eaten around the world.

Fresh Mealworms
Everyone was shocked to learn that people in other countries intentionally eat insects everyday… and enjoy them! Then, at the end of the presentation, the students were able to form their own opinions on exactly how tasty bugs actually are!

The basic field crickets as they are being cooked.
Lisa Sanchez created an interesting presentation of about 30 minutes that kept everyone whispering “gross” under their breath. She bombarded the students with unbelievable insect facts, accompanied with pictures. 

Did you know that insect parts are in all of our food, meaning that we have all eaten bugs in our life? 
Or that all of the termites in the world weigh more than all of the humans? 
What about the fact that honey is essentially bee vomit? 

The Asian Culture Club was fascinated by all of the mind-blowing facts they were able to learn.

Lancaster County Park Naturalist, Lisa Sanchez, gives a presentation to the Asian Culture Club.

After a few minutes of discussing the types of bugs, Lisa switched over to discussing what everyone was really there for--bug eating! She warned us to never eat red insects, like ladybugs, as they are poisonous, and to not eat insects with hard exoskeletons as that would resemble eating human fingernails! Lisa also mentioned that brown stink bugs taste like delicious cilantro and some bugs taste like big, green, juicy tomatoes.

Students gather around as the bugs are prepared.
Did you know that yellowjackets and wasps are edible? They may seem like our enemies, but they taste like sweet honey!

Finally came the moment that everyone was patiently waiting for. Lisa, who had a large plastic tub of crickets and mealworms, heated up a small stove top and began cooking the bugs. The room was instantly filled with a delicious rice-like smell.
Students daringly grab some freshly cooked mealworms as Mrs. Shehan gets their reactions on video

 And after a few minutes, when the tips of the mealworms were golden brown, everyone had a chance to try these freshly cooked bugs. Many students said they were surprised they tasted so good!

A close-up of a cooked cricket just as a student is about to eat it.
In Lisa’s words “insect wings are just like popcorn”. In other countries people eat insects at the movie theater!
Are you grossed out, or fascinated? Do you want to be adventurous and try some insects? Maybe basic field crickets are your new favorite snack! The Asian Culture Club left school that day with a new outlook on insects and the huge role they play in the food culture of many other countries.

--By Olivia Sullivan, LS News reporter

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