Whenever we see a cockroach crawling up the wall, we think, “I should take my shoe out and kill it”, not cook it and eat it.
However, a lot of people from countries like China, Thailand, and Ghana beg to differ.
There are many insects that are valued as appetizers in several countries with diverse cultures, and cockroaches are one of them.
Rather than cringing when cockroaches appear, many actually enjoy them as a delicacy.
So, what do cockroaches taste like? And why do people seem to enjoy them so much? In this article, we will have a look into the world of cockroaches as finger foods and how you can prepare them.
What are Cockroaches?
Cockroaches are more than just pests that seem to persistently come back even though you try to get rid of them.
They have high factors of nutrition and are excellent sources of protein.
Owing to this, they are staple dishes in different parts of the world.
The six-legged insect may be unsuitable for eating if it’s a household creature as it might be a carrier of viruses and bacteria.
However, if bred in a certain way and with fruits and vegetables as their wholesome diet, they can be the go-to snack.
It may seem like an awful idea, but it’s completely normalized.
Actually, many of us eat cockroaches without knowing it.
For example, there are dyes that are made from insects, and so if you consume foods made with the dye, you’re already sailing on the ship of exotic eating.
What Do Cockroaches Taste Like?
Even though Cockroaches seem like unclean food, they are actually relatively clean.
They’re tastier if they are bred specifically and fed with fruits and vegetables.
Of course, you can’t eat a random cockroach you find in your house, even though people in China hunt for them.
When it comes down to taste, it depends on the individual eating.
There have been a lot of mixed reviews as some love them and others hate them.
But one thing’s for sure; fried cockroaches have an unpleasant smell and taste that is similar to almost rotten fish.
The taste of cockroaches has been considered to be similar to the flavor of chicken meat.
This is because of their body content is filled up with mostly protein and water.
Because insects are cold-blooded creatures, they can actually share the taste of whatever you cook them in.
Madagascar hissing cockroaches are the most commonly known edible cockroaches.
These types of cockroaches are renowned for having a similar texture as that of greasy chicken.
While some say they taste like blue cheese, others claim that they familiarize squid with an aftertaste that’s mildly metallic.
German cockroaches are the common ones we find hiding in our houses.
These have a comparatively bland flavor profile with a tender crunch added to them.
They are even said to taste ‘mud-like’ if not cleaned with proper care before cooking.
Science has proven that cockroaches are edible and not harmful to consume.
But, it would help if you got rid of the bacteria that lies with the cockroaches by cooking them correctly.
You can boil them with some vegetables, saute them in cooking oil, or deep fry them to get that extra crunch.
Are Cockroaches Poisonous or Safe to Eat?
The poisonous quality of cockroaches depends on what they consume throughout their lives.
If they do not eat synthetic material, then cockroaches are not considered poisonous.
However, they can act as vehicles for pathogens that can make you sick and have food poisoning.
As with every other insect, you cannot simply pick cockroaches from behind your fridge and cook them.
They can host a lot of bacteria and be very harmful.
You must only eat those that are professionally prepared and cooked.
It has been investigated that cockroaches and other insects are linked to the transfer of fatal diseases to humans, including intestinal infections, typhus, malaria, etc.
However, there is evidence that in every 100 grams of chocolate and coffee, there are insect fragments that are blended in and served with the batch of chocolates or coffee.
This does not change the fact that they are safely prepared and eaten by many people.
Whether they are barbecued, deep-fried or boiled, they are enjoyed by many and also used as an alternative for shrimp.
Because of the cockroaches’ protein source, they are bred on farms and made into culinary dishes.
They can also have medicinal uses in traditional Chinese medicine, including them to cure asthma or dysentery.
Mexican and Cuban people have also been eating them by preserving them in oil and prepared for distinctive occasions like weddings.
Indonesia, Mexico, China, Thailand, etc.
, are widely known as countries that enjoy eating various insects like cockroaches.
Even though you hear bad reviews from some people, they are still a typical delicacy in multiple countries.
So, why don’t you become adventurous and try them out?
The next time you find a deep-fried insect meal, try not to be disgusted.
They hold a lot of protein that will do great for your diet.
We hope this article will help you feel less afraid of eating them, and who knows, maybe you’re already enjoying a cockroach sandwich.
Andrew Gray is a seasoned food writer and blogger with a wealth of experience in the restaurant and catering industries. With a passion for all things delicious, Andrew has honed his culinary expertise through his work as a personal chef and caterer.
His love for food led him to venture into food writing, where he has contributed to various online publications, sharing his knowledge and insights on the culinary world. As the proud owner of AmericasRestaurant.com, Andrew covers a wide range of topics, including recipes, restaurant reviews, product recommendations, and culinary tips.
Through his website, he aims to inspire and educate fellow food enthusiasts, offering a comprehensive resource for all things food-related.