Mexican Chapuline Tacos
Grasshoppers are a rich source of many lacking things when you miss out on your steak and chicken: iron, calcium, and B12!
Tacos from Thug Kitchen topped with Chapulines
INGREDIENTS
  • 50 grams of grasshoppers
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • 1 onion
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • Chopped chili pepper or chili powder (according to your love for spice)
  • 6 tacos
  • Tomato salsa
  • Guacamole
  • Corn
  • Roasted cauliflower (à la Thug Kitchen)
PREPARATION
  1. Prepare the grasshoppers according to what's on the package
  2. Preheat the oven at 180 degrees
  3. Warm up beer, broth, lime juice, chili, garlic and soy sauce in a pot
  4. Simmer the cauliflower for about two minutes and then drain
  5. Add spices and olive oil to the cauliflower florets, and roast in the oven
  6. Fry garlic, (onion), chili and lime in a pan on low heat
  7. Turn up the heat a little and cook the grasshoppers for about 10 minutes
  8. Get out your favorite salsa and extras
  9. Heat up the tacos
  10. Throw all that shit together and feast!

This recipe is one that will definitely convince you insects taste amazing if you weren't convinced yet: Mexican Chapulines. Chapulines are a delicacy in Mexico where they are first referenced in the 16th century already. Way back when, Mexicans used them as a cheap and sustainable source of protein and nowadays they are sold as your everyday market snack.

Grasshoppers on their own smell a bit like smoked fish, and also have a mild taste resembling this. The original Mexican Chapulines are cooked grasshoppers seasoned with chili, lime and garlic. And it actually is as simple as that: fry some garlic, chili and lime in a pan with oil, and add the grasshoppers to it for about 10 minutes or until brown and crispy and voila! You have just made yourself an ancient Mexican dish.

There is one catch when it comes to grasshoppers though: the preparation. Depending on how you buy them, and we usually buy them freeze-dried, their wings and legs still need to be removed. But no worries, we will help you out here. So grab these grasshoppers by the pony (read: wings) and let's get on with it. The easiest way to remove the wings as a whole without is to grab them close to where they are attached and break them off in an upward movement.

Removing the legs is easy, they basically break off when you touch them. All done! Now you are good to go to fry the seasoning and then the grasshoppers and enjoy a little bit of Mexico at home.

Grasshoppers ready to be cooked

Now since there is not much more Mexican than Taco Tuesday, we use the Chapulines as a topping for one of our favorite taco recipes: "Roasted Beer and Lime Cauliflower Tacos with Cilantro Coleslaw" from Bad Manners. The original recipe is unfortunately not available on their own website, but it can be found here. For amazing vegan recipes we definitely recommend checking out Bad Manners in general - we are big fans!

The fact that the cauliflower is first simmered in beer and lime and then roasted also makes it a perfect fit to the lime-seasoned grasshoppers. We love this recipe, but we basically encourage you to stuff your taco with anything you want. But let's go over a short summary of the roasted cauliflower to get you fully prepared.

To prep the cauliflower, cut it in small florets that easily fit in your taco. Mix beer, veggie broth, lime, chili, garlic and soy sauce in a pot and heat it up on medium heat until it barely boils. Simmer the cauliflower florets in it for about 2 minutes and drain.

Crank your oven up to 180 degrees, add some oil and spices to the cauliflower and roast them in the oven for 20 minutes. These 20 minutes are your perfect window to do the Chapulines, get the tomato salsa and guacamole out and heat up your tacos so you can feast on all of them together. Now go all the way and get yourself a Margarita to top it off. Salud!