Saturday, January 14, 2012

Essence of Giant Water Bug

Ok first off I have to say, as any of you who read this blog often will know, that I love Chinese grocery stores.  I love them because of the vast array of items they sell, for there dedication to fish and meat with there face on (as upsetting as that can often be for people) and especially for all the weird shit you find that boggles the mind of a Westerner.  This particular item has to be the winner, hands down, of the most strange item I have ever encountered.  Water Giant Big Essence.  Now of course the first place my mind goes is: What do you use it in?  The second was to check the ingredients which all seem to be synthetic to me, water bug was not listed as an ingredient.  It was in the "extract" section next to coconut and other extracts you'd use for baking. So....does this mean: Almond Water Bug Cookies?  Water Bug Butter Cream Layer Cake?  Taro Water Bug Mousse?

I had heard in Thailand that the "meat" of a water bug tasted no unlike lobster and that they were routinely fried and served in bars as snacks.  If indeed they do taste like lobster I would think they would be good in a stir fry with lots of vegetables served over rice.  Where I get lost is how they make the transition to an "extract" which to my understanding of it is only used in sweets.  But maybe this is used for savory dishes?  Anyone who is reading this that has any information about it please let me know I would really be interested in knowing what this would be used for,
As Chinese New Year is approaching all of Chinatown is preparing so lots of red lanterns and other decorations as well as celebratory sweets and baked goods.

Here are a few of my favorite items to celebrate the New Year:
The above is filled with candy. The plastic tree below is filled with, not surprisingly, fruit jells, that can be picked right from the tree!
Lastly I just thought this was fun as when read quickly could easily be called: Me So Easy.  Maybe I'm projecting?

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

Martin Yan in his Vietnamese cooking series on PBS used a few drops of "water bug essence" in Hanoi Chicken and Vermicelli soup.

Conrad said...

It's the pheromones of the giant water bug, it's added to soups and sauces.

Conrad said...

It's the pheromones of the giant water bug, it's added to soups and sauces.

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