For most folks in the United States and Europe, the thought of eating bugs is repulsive. For the majority of people everywhere else, it’s just part of life.
And while crunching on a cricket or slurping down a grub (ala Simba in Lion King) seems like something only people on Fear Factor would consider, the truth is, insects are an excellent source of protein.
That’s why food science researchers at BYU, led by assistant professor Laura Jefferies, are looking at how to process insects, specifically crickets, to make them more palatable to the western world.
“By themselves they taste kind of earthy, but when you eat them with other things they don’t necessarily have their own flavor,” said student Fred Bassett. “I’ve had them chocolate covered and the taste and texture is a lot like a Kit Kat bar.”
“But,” adds Jefferies, “Most people [in the western world] don’t want to eat a whole cricket.”