Propagation X, also known as the Great Cicada Hatch of 2021, approaches as ground temperatures in some parts of the United States approach 64%, the trigger, according to scientists, for billions of insects to rise to the surface and go into the trees. to mate.
It’s a remarkable 17-year life cycle for hordes of insects, which form different hatchlings that emerge at different times and remain underground for almost their entire lives before briefly emerging at the end to mate and then die.
Brood X, or Great Eastern Brood, is the group of cicadas that Distributed in areas of the northeastern US, including New York and Washington, as well as parts of the Midwest and West Virginia.
Their appearance is a bonanza for predators, including copperhead snakes, who also eagerly await the return of Brood X to the surface. Birds, squirrels, bats, wasps, mantises, spiders, and robber flies also prepare to feast on the swarm.
But this time, some American chefs and insect enthusiasts are looking to embrace traditions of entomophagy, the consumption of insects, both ceremonially and nutritionally.
Nowhere will the outbreak be more intense than around Washington. “Maryland is in the epicenter of cicada emergenceso there will be a spectacular number of cicadas emerging with great force. ”Michael Raupp, emeritus professor of entomology at the University of Maryland, known for his Bug boy Blog, He said WJLA.
“But the big ‘cicada-palooza’ is going to happen in the last two weeks of May and early June. So in some areas, there will be 1.5 million cicadas per acre emerging from the ground, ”Raupp added.
According to a recent report by Indian Country Today, The Indigenous Food Laboratory in Minneapolis is preparing to revive cicadas as a food source.
Sean Sherman, Founder and Head of Sioux Chef and a member of Oglala Lakota, told the outlet that the nonprofit wants to include insects on the menu of its new restaurant, Owamni, which will open this month.
“We have all kinds of amazing and diverse proteins in North America. If you’re looking at food from an indigenous perspective, you really have to include insects, ”Sherman, who won the 2018 James Beard Award for Best American Cookbook, The Sioux Chef’s Indigenous Kitchen, to Indian Country Today.
“Edible insects like grasshoppers are still used in Mexico today; the history of colonialism has stripped away our indigenous foods, describing them as inferior, “Sherman said, adding that” people must be open to exploring protein options beyond cows, chickens and pigs. “
The recommendation comes amid heightened awareness of the environmental costs of beef, pork and poultry production. Also in aquaculture, the depletion of wild fish populations and the concomitant damage of farmed substitutes are forcing the industry to consider other sources of nutrition..
According to “Edible Insects: Future Prospects for Food and Animal Safety”, a 2013 Report of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, “Edible insects contain high-quality human proteins, vitamins and amino acids. Insects have a high feed conversion rate, for example crickets need six times less feed than cattle, four times less than sheep and two times less than pigs and broilers to produce the same amount of protein ” .
In addition, the newspaper continues: “They emit less greenhouse gases and ammonia than conventional livestock.”
Other chefs plan to do the same. Joseph Yoon, CEO of Brooklyn Bugs, told the Washington Post you want to test them at every point in their four to six week life cycle. “There is so much beauty in the unknown,” he said.
Gene Kritsky, author of Periodic Cicadas: The Brood X EditionHe said he had tried the cicadas sautéed, blanched, in pies and sauteed, although it is best to batter and fry with cocktail sauce.
George is Digismak’s reported cum editor with 13 years of experience in Journalism