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Cicadas, anyone?

Cicadas, anyone?
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  • Post #31 - May 21st, 2007, 8:46 am
    Post #31 - May 21st, 2007, 8:46 am Post #31 - May 21st, 2007, 8:46 am
    good cicada video

    -ramon
  • Post #32 - May 21st, 2007, 8:56 am
    Post #32 - May 21st, 2007, 8:56 am Post #32 - May 21st, 2007, 8:56 am
    Ramon wrote:good cicada video

    -ramon


    Oddly, this video did not make me very hungry.
    “Nobody exists on purpose. Nobody belongs anywhere. Everybody’s gonna die. Come watch TV?”
  • Post #33 - May 21st, 2007, 9:01 am
    Post #33 - May 21st, 2007, 9:01 am Post #33 - May 21st, 2007, 9:01 am
    Sorry, David, perhaps this is more your cup of tea
    Attack of the Killer Cicadas (video)
    -ramon
  • Post #34 - May 21st, 2007, 12:40 pm
    Post #34 - May 21st, 2007, 12:40 pm Post #34 - May 21st, 2007, 12:40 pm
    http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/18780937/page/2/

    "Freelance writer David Hammond runs the LTHForum, a Chicago-based Internet site devoted to culinary matters, and his “foodie” friends want to see what the cicadas taste like. "


    :)
  • Post #35 - May 22nd, 2007, 1:31 pm
    Post #35 - May 22nd, 2007, 1:31 pm Post #35 - May 22nd, 2007, 1:31 pm
    HI,

    After not seeing a cicada in ten days, I saw two this morning while leaving for exercise class. I had not yet tented my young trees in tulle, which bothered me. I left 10 minutes early to get home to begin covering the more vulnerable, then hoped the onslaught would wait a bit longer.

    Just returned to find nobody yet emerging in east Highland Park. I guess it is the silence before the storm.

    Regards,
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast
  • Post #36 - May 22nd, 2007, 2:34 pm
    Post #36 - May 22nd, 2007, 2:34 pm Post #36 - May 22nd, 2007, 2:34 pm
    I'm assuming all this talk about eating this year's crop of cicadas isn't facetious (or just talk). But I wonder: How do you know this is safe? (This falls into the area of idle curiosity, since I'm not planning on eating any myself.) I mean, even if cicadas in general are safe to eat, how do you know that the particular ones you catch aren't going to be diseased, or carrying disease, or something? It seems like there would be a fair likelihood of that. Maybe the risk is no greater than with any other form of "wild game." But with deers and such, at least you remove the entrails and innards and such before cooking. I can't imagine there's a way to do that with cicadas.
  • Post #37 - May 22nd, 2007, 2:44 pm
    Post #37 - May 22nd, 2007, 2:44 pm Post #37 - May 22nd, 2007, 2:44 pm
    Freshness counts. They are supposed to be rich in protein and 'good' fat.

    I do plan to eat them. No joking.

    Regards,
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast
  • Post #38 - May 22nd, 2007, 2:45 pm
    Post #38 - May 22nd, 2007, 2:45 pm Post #38 - May 22nd, 2007, 2:45 pm
    Cathy2 wrote:Freshness counts. They are supposed to be rich in protein and 'good' fat.

    I do plan to eat them. No joking.

    Regards,


    There may be some concerns about mercury levels and possibly insecticides, but it's lot like I'm planning to eat a brimming bowlful of the little bastids.
    “Nobody exists on purpose. Nobody belongs anywhere. Everybody’s gonna die. Come watch TV?”
  • Post #39 - May 22nd, 2007, 3:00 pm
    Post #39 - May 22nd, 2007, 3:00 pm Post #39 - May 22nd, 2007, 3:00 pm
    riddlemay wrote:I'm assuming all this talk about eating this year's crop of cicadas isn't facetious (or just talk). But I wonder: How do you know this is safe? (This falls into the area of idle curiosity, since I'm not planning on eating any myself.) I mean, even if cicadas in general are safe to eat, how do you know that the particular ones you catch aren't going to be diseased, or carrying disease, or something? It seems like there would be a fair likelihood of that. Maybe the risk is no greater than with any other form of "wild game." But with deers and such, at least you remove the entrails and innards and such before cooking. I can't imagine there's a way to do that with cicadas.


    Well, disease is unlikely, mainly because their very long life cycle means that not many predator species (including pathogens) have a good opportunity to infect. I might wonder about long-term exposure to contaminants, since they are long lived, but since they don't grow to prodigious size I'm not sure they have enough of a metabolism to absorb a lot of toxins. I could certainly be wrong.

    And please, if you haven't gotten the message from this forum, "innards" or offal are not disease-ridden pestilence zones that must be removed before eating. I'm not a fan of the strong flavors and/or textures of much of the organ meats, but there's plenty of dishes which use them.

    Many invertebrates, including crawfish, oysters, etc. are eaten whole including the "innards."
    What is patriotism, but the love of good things we ate in our childhood?
    -- Lin Yutang
  • Post #40 - May 22nd, 2007, 3:04 pm
    Post #40 - May 22nd, 2007, 3:04 pm Post #40 - May 22nd, 2007, 3:04 pm
    I think one does have to be careful where they are collected. Also, it is best to blanch them for a few minutes to remove any possible soil contaminants. Seems to me they'll be safer than much of our factory farmed protein. And not any scarier than raw oysters! I'm creating a couple of cocktails in their honor. The bugtini and the cicada sunrise. Any other entries in the cocktail category? perhaps a roasted cicada instead of an olive? Marilyn
  • Post #41 - May 22nd, 2007, 3:08 pm
    Post #41 - May 22nd, 2007, 3:08 pm Post #41 - May 22nd, 2007, 3:08 pm
    cooksguide wrote:Any other entries in the cocktail category? perhaps a roasted cicada instead of an olive? Marilyn


    Marilyn, those drinks sound excellent. I got a call from an LA radio station today, and the beverage I suggested for a cicada dinner was vodka, in generous pours. :lol:

    Incidentally, the reporter asked about desserts, then suggested crumbling cicadas on ice cream, which sounds feasible.

    The wife is still on board for the cicada nori rolls -- I'll ponder the cocktail question.
    “Nobody exists on purpose. Nobody belongs anywhere. Everybody’s gonna die. Come watch TV?”
  • Post #42 - May 22nd, 2007, 3:15 pm
    Post #42 - May 22nd, 2007, 3:15 pm Post #42 - May 22nd, 2007, 3:15 pm
    That Cicadalicious document linked upthread has a recipe for cicada banana bread that sounds interesting. There is also a recipe for cookies with cicadas "emerging" from the cookies like they are crawling out of the ground.

    http://www.newsdesk.umd.edu/pdf/cicada%20recipes.PDF
  • Post #43 - May 22nd, 2007, 3:53 pm
    Post #43 - May 22nd, 2007, 3:53 pm Post #43 - May 22nd, 2007, 3:53 pm
    cooksguide wrote: Any other entries in the cocktail category?


    Here's one from the link stash, though I don't see any cicada connection aside from the name:
    red cicada (cocktail)
    -ramon
    (incidentally, I still haven't spotted a cicada!)
  • Post #44 - May 22nd, 2007, 4:36 pm
    Post #44 - May 22nd, 2007, 4:36 pm Post #44 - May 22nd, 2007, 4:36 pm
    HI,

    I just came back from Hancock Fabrics. They ran through 600 yards of tulle by early afternoon. I ended up buying 15 yards of patterned curtain shears in an interesting pattern. Will advise later after the bushes are clothed.

    Regards,
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast
  • Post #45 - May 22nd, 2007, 10:22 pm
    Post #45 - May 22nd, 2007, 10:22 pm Post #45 - May 22nd, 2007, 10:22 pm
    Hi,

    Living in the region known as 'cooler by the lake,' I have to wait longer for my cicada friends to arrive. Meanwhile I offer bit of a youtube clip from my front yard on May 4th: Teasing Cicadas.

    Regards,
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast
  • Post #46 - May 23rd, 2007, 8:31 am
    Post #46 - May 23rd, 2007, 8:31 am Post #46 - May 23rd, 2007, 8:31 am
    After spending an evening hunting cicada in Western Springs with Marilyn Pocius (cooksguide), and coming home with less than a dozen bite-sized morsels, I ambitiously met the dawn and went in search of the little bastids in several local forest preserves.

    No luck.

    Then, driving home along Lake Street, desultory and beaten, I spotted a tree with the familiar brown knobs glistening in the early morning light. I hit the brakes, careened to the curb, and started foraging.

    Image

    This was a motherlode. Nearby, several other trees promised similar riches. I filled a ziplock back with about 100 tenerals and a few white ones that had just shed their shells (interestingly, the tenerals seemed to cannibalize the white ones almost immediately).

    This collection experience was, honestly, an electric thrill, kind of like being present when cheese is being made, when the rennet hits the milk and it all starts...changing. I saw before me the full lifecycle of this amazing creature; squirming out of the ground (and I was grabbing these babies hand over fist), making for the tree, climbing, then arching out of the carapace, a ghostly white creature, ready for love, insect-style.

    Image

    Seeing me walk back to my car, I imagined River Forest folk out for a jog must have thought me an etymologist collecting samples; little did they know. To civilians, what I had in my hand was just a bag of bugs: to me, it was dinner.

    Image

    Back home, I quickly blanched about half.

    Image

    I froze one-quarter and refrigerated the other quarter.

    To be continued…
    “Nobody exists on purpose. Nobody belongs anywhere. Everybody’s gonna die. Come watch TV?”
  • Post #47 - May 23rd, 2007, 8:42 am
    Post #47 - May 23rd, 2007, 8:42 am Post #47 - May 23rd, 2007, 8:42 am
    David,

    Your persistence paid off handsomely!

    Congratulations!

    Regards,
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast
  • Post #48 - May 23rd, 2007, 9:01 am
    Post #48 - May 23rd, 2007, 9:01 am Post #48 - May 23rd, 2007, 9:01 am
    I feel so empty, I mean so lonely, I mean so cicada-friendless.

    Oh well, here's some more cicada recipes:
    in the kitchen with Mother Linda
    penne with cicada meat sauce

    -ramon
  • Post #49 - May 23rd, 2007, 12:29 pm
    Post #49 - May 23rd, 2007, 12:29 pm Post #49 - May 23rd, 2007, 12:29 pm
    Ok, I feel better now, somewhat.

    I finally spotted some cicadas in the Forest Preserve just south of 90 and east of the Des Plaines River. I had to turn over a rock though, and I think that's cheating. The ugly things immediately crawled back under ground at my sight.

    Eeew, I didn't want to touch them, let alone eat them! I got the willies, I mean the heebie-jeebies, I mean the jim-jams, just poking 'em with a stick.

    I do hope to return tonight with the little one to witness their emergence, but I will not be collecting any for the kitchen. I'll stick with animal protein for now, thank-you-very-much.

    :D
    -ramon
  • Post #50 - May 23rd, 2007, 3:16 pm
    Post #50 - May 23rd, 2007, 3:16 pm Post #50 - May 23rd, 2007, 3:16 pm
    David Hammond wrote:This was a motherlode.


    Did you notice if any of your dinner had blue eyes? I understand that approx 1% have blue, rather than red eyes. I won't rest until I spot at least 1 blue eyed cicada.
    Steve Z.

    “Only the pure in heart can make a good soup.”
    ― Ludwig van Beethoven
  • Post #51 - May 23rd, 2007, 4:18 pm
    Post #51 - May 23rd, 2007, 4:18 pm Post #51 - May 23rd, 2007, 4:18 pm
    I'm feeling the urge for a cicada dinner at Moto. :lol:
  • Post #52 - May 23rd, 2007, 5:48 pm
    Post #52 - May 23rd, 2007, 5:48 pm Post #52 - May 23rd, 2007, 5:48 pm
    Has anyone found any in the city? I know that I'll kick myself for the next 17 years if I don't have at least one cicada taco this spring, but my searches through Logan Square and Palmer Square haven't turned up anything... yet.

    Also, could someone please confirm what exactly a "teneral" cicada is? From the posts here it seems like tenerals are the ones that crawl out of the ground, but from most of the resources I've checked, tenerals are the ones that have freshly molted and are still soft and white.

    Thanks in advance, and I'll post if I find any on my scrounging tonight!
  • Post #53 - May 23rd, 2007, 7:04 pm
    Post #53 - May 23rd, 2007, 7:04 pm Post #53 - May 23rd, 2007, 7:04 pm
    santonoc wrote:Has anyone found any in the city? I know that I'll kick myself for the next 17 years if I don't have at least one cicada taco this spring, but my searches through Logan Square and Palmer Square haven't turned up anything... yet.

    Also, could someone please confirm what exactly a "teneral" cicada is? From the posts here it seems like tenerals are the ones that crawl out of the ground, but from most of the resources I've checked, tenerals are the ones that have freshly molted and are still soft and white.

    Thanks in advance, and I'll post if I find any on my scrounging tonight!


    You're right. Teneral is the freshly molted, white cicada (I thought the term referred to ones that had "emerged" from the ground, but it's actually ones that emerge from their infant form).

    I prefer the younger ones (veal, if you will). I ate a dozen or so tonight -- in nori rolls, on crackers with hummus, and in cocktails -- and found them surprisingly (!!) tasty. When fried, they crisp up quite nicely, and have a woody, peanut buttery taste.
    “Nobody exists on purpose. Nobody belongs anywhere. Everybody’s gonna die. Come watch TV?”
  • Post #54 - May 23rd, 2007, 7:49 pm
    Post #54 - May 23rd, 2007, 7:49 pm Post #54 - May 23rd, 2007, 7:49 pm
    stevez wrote:
    David Hammond wrote:This was a motherlode.


    Did you notice if any of your dinner had blue eyes? I understand that approx 1% have blue, rather than red eyes. I won't rest until I spot at least 1 blue eyed cicada.


    No, I was not scanning for that characteristic, but I am headed out at dawn tomorrow to fetch me a bag o' bugs, and if I find a blue-eyed devil, he's yours!

    David "A whunting we will gwo" Hammond
    “Nobody exists on purpose. Nobody belongs anywhere. Everybody’s gonna die. Come watch TV?”
  • Post #55 - May 23rd, 2007, 8:49 pm
    Post #55 - May 23rd, 2007, 8:49 pm Post #55 - May 23rd, 2007, 8:49 pm
    David,

    I'd like to join you on the morning cicada stroll, but I doubt I can schedule it. If you do head back to the "woods" here are the other, non-cicada things I would look for:

    Birds: Even IL birds are being decimated by Asian bird flu. Enjoy what you hear.

    Bees: I've seen damn few of them and its starting to disturb me.

    Wildflowers: I've seen even less of these, probably on accound of the lack of bees.

    Beavers: Yes, beavers. They were once "near extinct" in IL but B and I found fresh beaver sign just a few hours ago, and were encouraged.

    Hickory Nuts: Yep, now's the time to start plotting out the hickory (shagbark) trees -- you want to get to before the squirells in the fall. Shall we share tactics and GPS coordinates?

    Trash: someone has to recycle it.

    -ramon

    ps. You're always walking on Indian ground. You could find an arrowhead. Also, deer are fun, and I've only spotted one big buck in all my time of late in the woods, while does wish to eat out of my hands.

    Additionally, in my experience, the Cook County Forest Preserve is awash in creeps, the human kind, that pull in, play music loud, and leave their trash. I've gotten in the habit of bugging the forest pereserve police about these issues, upfront, and received some cooperation. Their non-emergency number is 708-771-1000.

    -ramon
  • Post #56 - May 23rd, 2007, 9:50 pm
    Post #56 - May 23rd, 2007, 9:50 pm Post #56 - May 23rd, 2007, 9:50 pm
    Ramon wrote:Additionally, in my experience, the Cook County Forest Preserve is awash in creeps, the human kind, that pull in...


    Funny you should mention that. Around 6:45 AM this morning in the Grand Army of the Republic woods, I pulled in the lot to see a guy in a hat sitting alone in a car. He didn't seem to be moving. Big deal, I thought. I got out and examined some trees; no bugs; got in the car to leave, and another guy in a hat pulled in front of me and stopped. It was getting strange. So I left.
    “Nobody exists on purpose. Nobody belongs anywhere. Everybody’s gonna die. Come watch TV?”
  • Post #57 - May 23rd, 2007, 9:53 pm
    Post #57 - May 23rd, 2007, 9:53 pm Post #57 - May 23rd, 2007, 9:53 pm
    David Hammond wrote:
    Funny you should mention that. Around 6:45 AM this morning in the Grand Army of the Republic woods, I pulled in the lot to see a guy in a hat sitting alone in a car. He didn't seem to be moving. Big deal, I thought. I got out and examined some trees; no bugs; got in the car to leave, and another guy in a hat pulled in front of me and stopped. It was getting strange. So I left.


    Are you sure it wasn't just a mirror?
    Steve Z.

    “Only the pure in heart can make a good soup.”
    ― Ludwig van Beethoven
  • Post #58 - May 23rd, 2007, 9:56 pm
    Post #58 - May 23rd, 2007, 9:56 pm Post #58 - May 23rd, 2007, 9:56 pm
    Tera Williams is one of us!

    Here's a linkto a cicada report filed by Ch32's Tera Williams in which she becomes a willing participant...twice.

    You've got to sit through a commercial before the video, but it's worth it.
    Steve Z.

    “Only the pure in heart can make a good soup.”
    ― Ludwig van Beethoven
  • Post #59 - May 23rd, 2007, 10:00 pm
    Post #59 - May 23rd, 2007, 10:00 pm Post #59 - May 23rd, 2007, 10:00 pm
    stevez wrote:Tera Williams is one of us!

    Here's a linkto a cicada report filed by Ch32's Tera Williams in which she becomes a willing participant...twice.

    You've got to sit through a commercial before the video, but it's worth it.


    Like the kids say, "They taste good...like almonds."
    “Nobody exists on purpose. Nobody belongs anywhere. Everybody’s gonna die. Come watch TV?”
  • Post #60 - May 23rd, 2007, 10:04 pm
    Post #60 - May 23rd, 2007, 10:04 pm Post #60 - May 23rd, 2007, 10:04 pm
    stevez wrote:Tera Williams is one of us!

    Here's a linkto a cicada report filed by Ch32's Tera Williams in which she becomes a willing participant...twice.

    You've got to sit through a commercial before the video, but it's worth it.


    I saw her with the kids eating cicadas the other night. I especially liked it when they exposed their tongues to prove it was all gone.

    I had my first cicada's this evening to find they tasted more than acceptably good. The cicadas picked fresh, then quickly cooked had more taste than the deep fried insects where it was really texture and not flavor.

    Image

    Sometimes I have to make compromises eating frozen, I learned tonight fresh off the hoof insect dining is a pleasure.

    Regards,
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast

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