Any idea for an original Christmas lunch? Maybe some delicious dishes based on insects? Bugs in Mugs is the idea of two young people in Belgium : from hambuergers to snacks, from pasta to meat skewers, everything based on insects.
Pasta fusilli made of insects flour could arrive soon on our tables: the European Parliament approved a resolution to try to speed up the authorization for the new food.
“It is a way to obtain an healthy nutrition and save the planet and to make counscious people regarding the high consumption of meat and abusive animals farms. It does not mean to refuse a steak with chips , but to offer a more economic, durable and ecologic alternative”. That’s what Gaelle Brée affirms , twentyfive years old , a past as fashion student , since two years and a half she is selling the” food of the future” at aperitifs in squares and street markets, at Christmas markets.
“We were at home watching a documentary on nutrition insects based and we thought with my boyfriend who is a biologist : why don’t we try to breed some insects?” Gaelle tells the beginning of the story. After the first attempts of cooking insects and dinners organized at home, they begun a real little business. Everything is manufactured by them: the insects breeded are then cooked by Gaelle and her boyfriend at their place. At the beginning there were some obstacles to sell their products, but now they seem to be over. After tasting food based on insects even the more scepticists are convinced. Furthermore there are some other benefits: insects have higher proteins value than meat they do not contain harmful facts of meat. An economic nutrition, 100% ecological and biological, that can be a model also for food farming industry, is detailed in the project Bugs in Mugs. Even in the supermarkets in Belgium Delhaize and Carrefour it is possible to buy some products based on insects.
At the end of October the EU Parliament voted in favour of speeding up for authorizations for novel food and in particular for food based on insects. The resolution still in first reading and it is waiting the opinion of European Food Safety Agency (Efsa) regarding the effects on human health, but it is still at first stage. The resolution is taking in consideration nanomaterials, colorants, cellular farming , algae, scorpions, insects, larva and spiders.
“The possible presence of biological and chemical hazards in food and feed products derived from insects would depend on the production methods, what the insects are fed on (substrate), the lifecycle stage at which the insects are harvested, the insect species, as well as the methods used for further processing” EFSA’s scientific experts say.
EFSA in a recent report published in October, concludes that “when non-processed insects are fed with currently permitted materials, the potential occurrence of microbiological hazards is expected to be similar to that associated with other non-processed sources of protein. There are limited data available on the transfer of chemical contaminants from different types of substrate to the insects themselves”.
The Scientific Opinion also considers the possible hazards associated with other types of substrate, such as kitchen waste, and animal manure .
On the website manataka it is possible to find some recipes for delicious dishes for an original Christmas
Mealworm Fried Rice
Scramble egg in a saucepan, stirring to break egg into pieces.
Add water, soy sauce, garlic and onions. Bring to a boil.
Stir in rice. Cover; remove from heat and let stand five minutes.
Chocolate Covered Grosshoppers
Melt baker’s chocolate in double boiler.
Fill molds halfway with chocolate, add grasshoppers, fill rest of the way.
Crackers and Cheese Dip with Candied Crickets
Soften cream cheese. Introduce remaining ingredients.
Spread mixture on cracker and top with a candied cricket.