If you can't beat ’em, eat ’em: Frank’s RedHot releases The Cicada Cookbook

Product shot of The Cicada Cookbook by Frank's RedHot [image provided by Frank's]
Image: Frank’s RedHot

Knowing what we know about the environmental impacts of cattle farming and other meat production, it’s not so far-fetched to start looking to insects as our next major source of protein. Many leaders in this space have been trying to change hearts and minds for years, moving the needle toward a greater acceptance of incorporating bugs into our diet. (Of course, the hearts and minds that need changing are primarily American ones; many countries around the world serve insects in a variety of treasured dishes, and our country’s hesitation to eat bugs is by no means the global norm.) Now, Frank’s RedHot is using the Brood X cicada swarm as the perfect excuse to join in the conversation: it has released The Cicada Cookbook, a collection of recipes that combine periodical cicadas and hot sauce to create delectable snacks, apps, and even beverages.

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The digital cookbook will be available online next week at www.FranksRedHot.com and will feature 13 different recipes, which I have to believe is more than enough for even those most curious about Brood X cuisine. Here’s what Frank’s had to say about the collection in an email sent to The Takeout:

Crafted by Frank’s RedHot® with your favorite classic recipes in mind, the cookbook breaks down the best ways to prepare the insects and spice up those suckers with your Frank’s. Luckily, the main ingredient won’t be hard to find this summer.

Frank's RedHot recipe for air-fried buffalo cicada wings [image provided by Frank's]
Image: Frank’s RedHot

We recently polled readers on whether they’d try eating Brood X cicadas, especially considering that experts have described them as having a sweet shrimp-like flavor. The reactions were pretty mixed; some people were eagerly awaiting the opportunity to taste them, while others said no amount of fried breading or chocolate chips could cover up the bugginess enough for their taste. I was ambivalent up until now, but a Frank’s RedHot cookbook might be what nudges me toward tasting them, because I really do put that $#!t on everything.

Marnie Shure is editor in chief of The Takeout.

DISCUSSION

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simon-on-the-river3

The i had an article earlier in the weeks about a firm called Bug, that is starting up insect meal kits. They are on Instagram with pitta bread stuffed with buffalo worm falafel, and stir fries topped with teriyaki crickets. No mention of cicadas yet. They exceeded their crowd funding target of £300,000 by £100,000. Should be available this side of the pond by Autumn.