The March of the Ants…

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Good for You | Good for Our Planet

I really did not know that I was supporting the environment or providing extra protein and iron for the health of our guests when I unknowingly feed them “puds” (puds is the South African all encompassing word meaning dessert) with live ants…it really is one of those life experiences that make you cringe and laugh at…all at the same time…

Mr. P asked someone who did him a favor to stay for supper…just to set up the scene…I do enjoy being hospitable and am usually pretty good at it…I was happy to do so…totally unprepared to feed the gentleman and his 10/11 year old son on a 30 minute notice…

Grabbed some steaks out of the freezer…baked a few potatoes and made a salad…easy and perfectly acceptable…but what to serve for dessert🍮…hmmm…now I had leftover chocolate cake and “Crunchies” (Crunchies are a nonbake bar made with oats, coconut and honey)…not a bad ending…I asked if (we’ll call the son “E”) E liked chocolate…now what kid does not like chocolate…and he grinned…warming my heart…

Grabbing a bowl…I add some chocolate cake and “crunchie” and sat it down in front of “E”…he was sitting at the table diagonally across from me and I couldn’t really see what was happening…but I noticed that he wasn’t eating his chocolate cake…and just a little bit of his crunchie…hmmm🤔…a question mark briefly tiptoed across my mind…but just let it keep going as I continued conversing and trying to play hostess…

Then I saw his father briefly reach across his bowl and pick something off…still didn’t register….

…And then when I brought his father dessert…all was revealed…they had been so polite that they didn’t let me know what was going on…though I tried to serve chocolate covered ants unknowingly…

I cannot even imagine what “E” told his mother about the “crazy” woman from America serving live ants with his chocolate cake…maybe that is how I got away with it…because even though I was embarrassed beyond measure…and was probably my worst dinner disaster…I will forever remember how grateful they were with the sharing of our home and meal…even receiving the warmest hug from “E” before they left…a truly memorable evening here…

I firmly believe that the ants own the land here in South Africa…the birthplace of man…and apparently that of the ant too…huge ant hills are a familiar sight…especially in the game reserves…

Out of curiosity, I searched for what countries served “ants” for food…I came across some new and interesting information that I had never really seen before…about Entomophagy, the consumption of insects as food…very nutritional and even promoted by the U.N. for the following reasons….

Adding insects to our diet resolves a lot of problems!

https://www.edibleinsects.com/entomophagy/

Making Entomophagy a trend here in the West will change the trajectory and make eating insects more popular worldwide. Doing this will reduce the demand for traditional meat and help limit the destruction it’s causing. We need to adopt insects into our diets for many reasons.
Key points are listed below.

Food Insecurity: Edible insects are available to just about anyone anywhere. They can be grown in homes, small farms, and large commercial enterprises.

Inhumane Treatment of Livestock: Insects raised for food can be grown and harvested humanely without the need for growth hormones and antibiotics.

Deforestation: Two-thirds of the deforestation taking place in the Amazon is for beef. Insects can be grown humanely just about anywhere, in rural and urban areas. You can even raise insects in old warehouses.

Pollution: Fertilizers, manure, and pesticides are major causes of land, water, and air pollution. Livestock is responsible for around 14 percent of greenhouse gas emissions.

Land & Water Resources: Two-thirds of our potable water and over a third of our arable land is used for livestock. As our population increases by 50% in the near future, finding solutions to this is imperative.

Our Health: Edible insects are a real animal protein that includes all nine essential amino acids; they’re a prebiotic fiber (nutrition for probiotics), very high in antioxidants, a perfect Omega 3:6 balance, high in B12, Calcium, Zinc, Iron, and more. Insects are also a very bio-available food source.

Just in case you are interested😂…Here is an actual recipce from https://www.bugsfeed.com/locusts_with_ants_and_wild_garlic…

Even though there are over 36 African countries that are “entomophagous…and “bugs” may be a mass produced food source in the future…I don’t think I’ll ever be a “bug” connoisseur anytime soon…or contributing much in the way of this new cuisine…but hey, that’s just my personal aversion to bugs in any shape and form …

Would you be willing to create a meal with bugs…

Sending much love…laughter and magic…no “bugs” though…