-Editor’s note: Today we once again have J. blogging for us from Saskatchewan.  She’d already eaten bugs, so why have another one of us suffer?

One semester I happened to have a really great Grade 10 Science class.

As a teacher you can get many different types of groups of students but this particular group found me devising a really great bonus project for them to complete. As a class, we were going to eat bugs covered in chocolate. I think I took them by surprise – so much so they did not have time to say no. As a class we came up with a list of why eating chocolate covered bugs would be a good idea and here are a few I can recall:

1. It always a good thing (food or otherwise) to challenge yourself and try something new.

2. Explore what makes up food biochemically and explain why insects are a viable form of nutrition.

3. Learn about the life cycle of an insect by growing and caring for them ourselves.

4. Get the school involved by raising money for a worthy cause (someone wants to watch us eat bugs, right?)

5. Discover what other cultures in the world eat organisms what we, as North Americans, find on average unappealing.

So, as a class we bought some mealworms and cared for them in our classroom. Mealworms are just the larval stage of the flour beetle or darkling beetle and are considered a common pest. You can purchase them at local pet stores as they are often fed to different types of lizards and other pets or used for fishing. We fed them only bran, oats and flour so by the time the semester was over, we knew their digestive tracts were squeaky clean with no trace of chemicals or other possible insect “food” we did not want to consume ourselves.

The students invited their friends to pay “what they had” at the door to watch my Gr. 10 class eats chocolate covered mealworms for lunch. We raised over $100 for Development and Peace!

Now, the details you have all been waiting for:

“]Mealworms

Mealworms-Peter Halasz/Creative Commons

We first toasted the mealworms in a frying pan to ensure they were dead and nice and crispy. Due to the high fat content, if you sauté the mealworms too long, they begin to pop like popcorn – but not in a good way [Eeew. – Ed.]. We cooled them on a cookie sheet and poured melted chocolate (Milk chocolate Chipits, if I remember correctly) to make little 3-5 mealworm “clusters” and cooled them in the fridge.

Result: Not delicious, but not bad either. You really could not taste them under all the chocolate, except for a toasted, greasy finish. I did try a few without chocolate and they were fatty, with a nice crunch due to their exoskeletons hitting the frying pan. In a future post-apocalyptic world, I could easily see insects being incorporated into a variety of foods for fat and protein when we no longer have the usual suspects around to sustain us.

via Saskatchewan,

J.

Advertisements