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Eat-a-bug Cookbook: 33 ways to cook grasshoppers, ants, water bugs, spiders, centipedes, and their kin Paperback – June 1, 1998

4.5 out of 5 stars 21 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

David George Gordon, author of The Compleat Cockroach, says eating protein-rich bugs is good for you ("Crickets are loaded with calcium, and termites are rich in iron), and good for the earth ("Raising cows, pigs, and sheep is a tremendous waste of the planet's resources, but bug ranching is pretty benign"). After all, what's inherently more disgusting about eating a grasshopper than, say, an oyster? Gordon enthusiastically provides recipes for terrestrial arthropods gleaned from the entomophagic appetites of people around the world, telling you which insects are most delicious and which to avoid, how to cook them, and which wine to drink with your many-legged meal. The recipes themselves are clear, easy to follow, and quite educational, with sidebar tidbits about the bugs you're about to eat. Gordon divides the recipes into sections by type of insect, be it grasshoppers, social insects, or "pantry pests." And, of course, he provides a list of places where you can order your edible insects and tips for catching your own. The Eat a Bug Cookbook is a sure kitchen conversation piece--even if you never try Three Bee Salad or Chocolate Cricket Torte, you'll laugh out loud, squirm uncomfortably, and lick your chops while taking this deliciously creepy culinary tour. --Therese Littleton

Review

Praise for David George Gordon’s previous book, The Compleat Cockroach:

“Gordon’s enthusiasm–if not his affection–for his subject is contagious.” --Discover magazine

“His lighthearted text is informative and enjoyable.” --Scientific American

“A smorgasbord of information.” --Science News

“Yuck!” --Scott Simon, NPR Weekend Edition
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 128 pages
  • Publisher: Ten Speed Press; 1st Ed. edition (June 1, 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0898159776
  • ISBN-13: 978-0898159776
  • Product Dimensions: 7.3 x 0.3 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.6 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #264,169 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Scott Leopold on February 17, 2000
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
While I originally bought this as a gag gift for my wife (no pun intended), once we tried some of the recipes we found that we really enjoyed it. Even our son has taken a liking to the recipes (so far, crickets are his favorite). If you can get past your initial apprehension, you'll really enjoy the recipes. Oddly enough, I've also found that I'm no longer asked to bring in dishes for our carry-ins at work.
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I had the pleasure of assisting Mr. Gordon at the Pacific Science Center here in Seattle, where he prepared Orzo with Crickets for an audience of stunned adults and captivated kids (not to mention animal-rights protesters--forget the Makah whale hunts, let's keep people from eating insects!). I was skeptical at first--and it *was* disconcerting to see "bugs" in the sample that I ate--but the bottom line is any dish with orzo, peppers, garlic, and butter will taste good! The crickets add a mild flavor and interesting texture. Try it. You might squirm at first, but you'll like it.
Maybe this will be the next Seattle craze to sweep the nation. Move over, Starbucks!
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When British scientist J.B.S. Haldane was asked what could be inferred about the Almighty from a lifelong study of nature, he replied (given that there are 400,000 species of beetles, compared with only 8,000 species of mammals) that God must have Òan inordinate fondness for beetles.Ó If beetles and other insects are so abundant, why doesnÕt everyone eat bugs instead of plants, fish, birds, and chemically-fattened mammals? As explained in this prankish yet valuable guide to entomophagy (Latin for Òbug-eatingÓ), we already eat insects, inadvertently, in the sense that the FDAÕs food safety regulations allow up to 60 aphids in 3 1/2 ounces of frozen broccoli, 74 mites in 100 grams of canned mushrooms, and so on. They canÕt be completely kept out of our food, and, so long as we donÕt know weÕre eating them, theyÕre not only tasty, theyÕre rich in nutrients (a grasshopper, for example, is more than 20 per cent protein, and crickets are an excellent source of calcium). This parody of a typical cookbook concludes with a 3-page list of suppliers of edible anthropods (whether live or ready to serve), manufacturers of exotic toothpicks, and organizations that sponsor bug-eating extravaganzas. The author, who has a weakness for bad puns (among his recipes are ÒParty Pupae,Ó ÒThree Bee Salad,Ó ÒPest-O,Ó and ÒFried Green Tomato Horn WormÓ), has written such earlier popular books as The Compleat Cockroach and Field Guide to the Slug (which the New York Times described as ÒgrippingÓ). (Review from Ballast Quarterly Review, Vol 14 No 2 Winter 1998-99)
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This is a great book! Gordon uses the grossness of the topic to suck the reader into an informed discussion of science, history, anthropology, popular culture, and culinary arts. He does an excellent job of providing engaging "factoids" on every page. You can pick up this book, turn to any page, and find a lively, hilarious discussion.
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I find this book to be delightful, as well as the good recipies. Of course, that view is not shared by all of my family members (very few in my family have ventured to test my creations.) I was lucky enough to be present at a demonstration by Mr. Gordon at a Bug Fest, so I have tasted the way the author himself prepares them. It might not be suitable for the pickier members of your family, but I have quite enjoyed the book and the recipies.
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As someone who cooks and serves insects frequently (to rave reviews!), I can not say enough good things about this book.

It is the perfect primer for the beginning bug-eater, and a wonderful compilation of information even for the informed entomophagist. I refer to, quote, and am inspired by this book on a regular basis. It is a great combination of broad knowledge and the author's own brand of snappy, humorous writing and great selection of illustrations and photos.

Beyond all of this, the recipes actually work. Regular people who've never knowingly eaten a bug in their life will take a bite and say, "Huh, that's pretty good, actually!"

With the world currently opening its eyes to the benefits of edible insects, this book will prove to be a significant contributor to the evolving foodscape.

Get it so you can say you read it first!
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Beautifully and profusely illustrated, as well as well written, this book should be on every coffee table and would make an excellent gift for any occasion. Everybody (no matter how much they protest) is fascinated by the undeniable fact that almost all those creepy crawly creatures are edible, and often nutritious and delicious. As an author and a very curious traveler, I have gone out of my way on four continents to find and to sample various strange foods. Mr. Gordon's recipes are clear and appealing and if you can't catch them yourself, he tells you just where you can buy these tasty little morsels. Bon Apetit.
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The ideal gift for your mother-in-law
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