What would you eat if there was not enough meat for the growing population of the world? Would you eat insects if they were more readily available? How many of us would even consider eating a dish with insects, even if it was made available? Is it safe to eat an insect? So many questions arise when discussing insects as a food of the future. I was equally as reluctant to eat worms or crickets as anyone would be.
Why are we taken-aback when it is insects, and why not the same questions for any other seafood or animal that we consider otherwise, fit for human consumption. I feel, we in today’s times of urbanization, have been spoilt by a plethora of food choices. We buy what we crave for and rarely think about the impact it has on the environment.
I got a chance to try cricket and meal worm bolognaise and I was excited to encounter insects as food for the first time. Both the sauces were served with farfalle pasta. The taste of both sauces was very distinct but they did not taste any different from a sauce that is made with vegetables and cheese. There was no added cheese to any of those sauces. The texture wasn’t very dense like a meat sauce, but no one would doubt that there were some bell peppers, garlic or onion in them. The cricket bolognaise tasted of more vegetables and had a lot more texture to it as compared to the meal worm bolognaise. Whereas the meal worm bolognaise tasted a lot like aged cheese, having no actual cheese in it. The difference in the sauces was huge.
Whether I would eat food with visible insects in it, is still to be explored. We are most concerned about the visual appeal of food than the taste and nutrition that it has to offer. Maybe in the future, insects become a regular part of our diet and a must- have on restaurant menus. After all, insects are as nutritious as any other source of food, if not higher in proteins, they are more sustainable to grow for a large population and take up lesser resources to be grown.