Eating Big-Bottomed Ants in San Gil

source

Roasted big-bottomed ant. Source.

San Gil is a beautiful, vibrant town. A busy central plaza is surrounded by sloping, cobbled streets. At a first glance you would never guess, but this town has a secret. A love of the extreme. From extreme sports (I tried paragliding) to extreme culinary offerings. And I’m not just talking about the pineapple sauce they put on my hot-dog, because that was actually pretty tasty! I’m talking about hormigas culonas. Or big-bottomed ants.

San Gil Cathedral

San Gil Cathedral

Ants are a traditional snack in this region of Colombia. Legend has it that if the local peasants didn’t eat the ants then the ants would eat them! (That’s a story line of a low-budget horror film right there!) So to help out the locals I decided to try them for myself, I didn’t want someone getting eaten alive being on my conscience, you understand.

Luckily these aren’t just any old ants plucked off the ground. They’re big, or at least their bums are. They’re roasted and seasoned with salt. They still looked like ants though and I was very aware of the fact I was putting an insect in my mouth. I bit down and felt it crunch. A stray leg got caught between my teeth. I could only taste the salt. A bit like popcorn really.

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Posted on July 19, 2014, in Colombia, South America and tagged . Bookmark the permalink. 16 Comments.

  1. ummmmm. better you than me! lol

  2. daaamn, so they tasted a bit like popcorn? or you just pretended to eat popcorn so it didn’t seem that bad. Thanks for sharing this interesting fact!

  3. First off, it’s hilarious that big-bottomed ants are a thing. Second – good for you for trying them! I’ve heard they’re a great source of protein… but I’m not sure I’d be up for the challenge 😉

  4. You are brave to try this! I would have second and third thoughts!! Haha…:)

  5. I would totally try those! I’ve eaten fried scorpions in Beijing and citrusy ants at noma in Copenhagen, and both ended up tasting really good. It’s surprising what fun snacks can be found with an open mind.

  6. Hey! I’ve nominated you for the ‘Versatile Blogger Award’! Go here to find out more! (sorry if you’ve already been nominated!)
    https://worldjourneysdiscover.wordpress.com/2014/07/23/versatile-blogger-award-nomination/

  7. Lucky you 😉 Good for you for being an adventurous eater. I guess it’s just mind over matter, right? I think i’d try ants before all other insects though. I love the name!

  8. Oh, those are on my list of things I haven’t tried. they look amazing. and creepy.

  9. If we were there, this is eomthing we definitey would have tried! Or at least, my husband would have. I always like to think I’m an adventurous eater, but when the fork or skewer actually gets close to my mouth, I’ve been known to wimp out.

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