Monday, December 2, 2013

Grasshoppers on the Menu at Barro Negro

We met friends, Chris and Betsy, for lunch at the new restaurant Barro Negro in the old Origines building on the corner of 38th Street and Flamingo Avenue.  The waiter handed us menus in English which listed grasshoppers as a primary ingredient in several dishes.  We thought surely this was a mistake.  We asked the waiter who confirmed there was no translation issue - they were serving grasshoppers.

The server at Barro Negro explained that in the Oaxaca region of Mexico grasshoppers are a staple in the daily diet.  He then brought over some miniature dried and salted grasshoppers with lime for us to try.  I refused at first since I am not much of an adventurous eater, but after Chris, Betsy and Allan tried them and said they were good I figured what the heck.  They were a bit crunchy but really all you could taste was the salt and lime so it really did not taste like I was eating an insect. Betsy, who spent her child hood in Hong Kong said outside the Western diet, grasshoppers are on the menu in pretty much every other culture.

The waiter also brought over some grasshopper powder with salt and lime which some apply to the rim of cocktail glasses.  I had enough insects for the day so I passed on trying this one, but everyone else said it was good.  Allan was so inspired he ordered sautéed grasshoppers as his main dish and commented they were very good. I opted for a duck toastada with tomatoes, peppers, cheese and avocado - it was delicious.   In short I would say the food at Barro Negro (for grasshopper fans and those not) is really good but the drinks are very expensive - cokes are about $3 USD - more than twice what they normally are.

Barro Negro Menu

My delicious toastada which I split with Chris

Grasshopper powder

Chris enjoys dry, salted grasshopper with lime

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