During the Brood II cicada swarm of 2013, he spotted what he describes as thousands of the creatures hanging out in trees and making a buzzing sound comparable to that of a low-flying airplane. So many, in fact, that while he was fishing in Fishkill, he caught a brown trout that appeared to have ingested several cicadas in its belly.
He also decided to pick a few cicadas and take them back to cook them. After marinating them in Worcestershire sauce for two weeks, he fried them up: "When we fried them, we ate everything. The wings just disintegrated in oil. When you cooked them, there was no sensation that you were eating them or that they were there. They were all fried up and crispy."
Bathed in Buffalo sauce, Schwartz says they were a tasty treat. He describes them as a culinary "foil," or a kind of food that imparts little flavor on its own.
"They almost tasted like nothing but what we put in them, but they were kind of crunchy. The thing I can compare them to is kale chips that you roast in the oven, or seaweed," he said.
After savoring his meal, Schwartz says he almost certainly will attempt a bug-cooking project again.
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