In February 2017, BBC News reported that Angelina Jolie, during her film promotion in Cambodia, made an interesting culinary choice. Embracing the local cuisine, she ventured into the realm of unique delicacies – bugs. Not only did she consume these creepy crawlies herself, but she also shared her knowledge with journalist Yalda Hakim, teaching her how to cook and appreciate these curious treats. Jolie’s culinary bravery was evident as she fearlessly fried a scorpion and relished the taste of a spider leg, finding it surprisingly delightful.
Cambodia is known for its diverse range of edible insects, which are enjoyed by locals and adventurous tourists alike. Some of the popular bugs for eating in Cambodia include crickets, locusts, grasshoppers, grubs, maggots, silkworms, giant water bugs, scorpion skewers, and even tarantulas. These insects can be found and purchased at roadside markets like Skun, which is conveniently located approximately 70 km outside of Phnom Penh on the way to Kampong Cham. Additionally, some restaurants in Siem Reap, particularly Pub Street, offer insect-based dishes for those eager to try this unique cuisine.
The concept of consuming bugs may seem unconventional to many, but it has been a part of traditional Cambodian cuisine for centuries. Not only are these insects a readily available source of protein, but they also offer a variety of flavors and textures that can be surprisingly appealing. Many who try these dishes are pleasantly surprised by the taste and find themselves becoming fans of what has come to be known as “creepy crawly cuisine.”
The increasing popularity of bug-based dishes can be attributed to their nutritional value and sustainability. Insects are rich in protein, vitamins, and minerals while requiring fewer resources and producing fewer greenhouse gases compared to traditional livestock farming. As the world grapples with issues like food scarcity and environmental sustainability, exploring alternative food sources like Cambodia’s bug cuisine becomes increasingly important.
For those with an adventurous palate or an interest in experiencing different cultures through food, sampling Cambodia’s bug cuisine is a must-try experience. While it may initially seem daunting to indulge in these unusual delicacies, the rewards are often surprising.
When planning your vacation, consider visiting popular destinations in Cambodia such as Phnom Penh, Siem Reap, Kep, Kampot, Mondulkiri, and more. By doing so, you’ll have the opportunity to immerse yourself in the rich culinary traditions of the country, including trying traditional foods, unique cuisine, and even adventurous dishes like bugs with a creepy crawly taste. Alongside the stunning landscapes, friendly locals, and magnificent temples, this will surely enhance your overall experience in Cambodia.
So why not follow in Angelina Jolie’s footsteps and embark on a culinary adventure filled with creepy crawlies?
BBC News Resources: https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-39039395