I ate crickets (acheta domesticus) from the local pet food store. They were largest live crickets in stock and looked healthy. I didn’t ask what their feed was (which I should have done) and just went for it. I popped them into the freezer to harvest them. ‘Harvest’ is the term that has replaced ‘slaughter’ when it comes to processing livestock. I tried two preparation variants. Test 1 – boil rinsed crickets in salted water for 3 minutes. Test 2 – boil rinsed crickets in salted water seasoned with crushed garlic and dried chili flakes for 5 minutes. The cooked crickets were tasted as is with no additional components.
Test 1 – The flavor was sort of a mixture of chicken, lobster and shrimp; there was also a mild earthy background but it was not bad. There were strong salty and umami components. The texture was soft and pliable. I could bite through them without issue. I found dehydrated crickets in comparison have a brittle and fibrous texture but this was not the case with fresh. The fresh cricket was quite soft and very palatable. There was no need to remove the legs.
Test 2 – The seasoned cooking broth delivered a mild garlic flavor to the crickets. The flavor again was sort of a mixture of chicken, lobster and shrimp. Flavoring the cooking broth complimented the crickets well. My cricket boil seasoning can certainly be improved upon and designed to complement the end dish. Crickets would complement a shrimp boil nicely. The texture was soft; not noticeably different than the 3 minute boil.
Linguini with Cricket Sauce… A twist on clam sauce. Substitute crickets for clams in your favorite clam sauce recipe. Crickets won’t release any moisture when cooking as fresh clams do so adjust the liquid content accordingly. Coarsely chop the cooked crickets so their flavor gets evenly distributed in the final dish.