Termite Terminator Time! – On Eating Termites

Submitted by indohoyindohoy on 14 December 2011   •  Opinion

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Till this day, there are some things that I will not say no to, and that is trying out food. Anything that looks disgusting even, I’ll stick it in my mouth for the sake of a new experience. For me, my taste buds are heroes in its own right. This time it was about eating termites. 

We were half way bored in the start of this year’s rainy season and us Wetarians (as we call ourselves now), would do anything for a buzz. Some take it too seriously and get wasted. Me? I eat termites. Yes! I finally got to eat Laron or the flying termites usually found flying after the rain. Don’t you just hate hundreds of them flying around your light bulb and disturbing your peace? Or is it just plainly an Indonesian thing? But anyways, it was time to teach ‘em a lesson and eat ‘em!

travel Indonesia - Wetar

The flying termites are commonly know to be eaten by the Javanese. They de-wing them, fry them without oil, and sprinkle it on top of rice. It’s hard to find this dish nowadays. It’s not a common dish as it was way back when. Also because it’s a conditional dish, depending on when they come out.

I never had a chance to try it until a few days ago. These old Javanese mining blokes were happy to prepare about 3 pots filled of these flying beings after a drizzle. As I said, they’d do anything to keep themselves from being bored to death. I tried to put my hand in the pot and man did it give me the hibby jibbies. The moving insect gave me mild goosebumps! Eeck….!

travel Indonesia - Wetar

When the time came, I placed a fried laron on my tongue, closed my eyes, and started chewing. My aged friends had a blast laughing and watching me fear such a small creature that was already dead in my mouth. How was it? Well I’d be damned! It’s tasty. It has this taste like fried mini shrimp. And then I put more in my mouth and on my rice. I also tried a raw dead one, because the guys said it was OK. It didn’t taste much different to the fried one, just a lot juicier. Huuuu….

As I think about it, it’s quite funny. I’ve been looking for this dish during my travels for so long but I didn’t have to look far beyond my friends. You just need really traditional fellas like these guys 😀

travel Indonesia - Wetar

In the end, this goes out to those that are limited to a 9 to 5 job and only have a handful of annual leaves. Even though we encourage you to travel and experience new things, maybe the thrill is not far from your limited space. Sometimes, it’s not your body that needs to travel, it’s your mind that can wonder in to new things. Happy wondering!


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