Crunchy scorpions, beetles on menu at Paris bar
Chef Elie Daviron prepares a plate of grasshoppers in his bar "Le Festin nu" (The Naked Lunch) in Paris. The 26-year-old from Montpellier in southern France became interested several years ago in the idea of how insects could in future be a common source of protein in Europe. And after the release of a UN report on edible insects earlier this year, he "realised that people were waiting for someone to do that".
Grasshoppers, beetles, scorpions and two different types of worm -- sango and silk -- are the latest additions to his fare. "My personal favourite is the sango worm," Daviron told AFP from behind the bar of the Festin Nu or Naked Lunch, a watering hole in this picturesque northern slope of the Montmartre hill.
The body was "sandy" tasting while the head was "crunchy" and tasted a bit like a combination of beetroot and mushrooms, he added. Daviron ordered a selection from a company licensed to import dried insects and set about experimenting with recipes.
The result was five dishes including scorpion with pepper cooked in olive oil, beetle with cucumber, ginger pickle and green peas and grasshopper with egg. The protein-rich insects are imported from Thailand where they are widely eaten as snacks.
But due to limited demand in France the few licensed suppliers deal only in dried insects rather than frozen or fresh. Chef Elie Daviron prepares a plate of grasshoppers in his bar "Le Festin nu" (The Naked Lunch) in Paris' on October 23, 2013.