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  • Serves: 4 Servings

Soft-Shelled Cicadas

  • Recipe Submitted by on

Category: Main Dish, Appetizers

 Ingredients List

  • 60 Freshly emerged 17 year
  • Cicadas
  • 3 c Flour
  • Salt and pepper to season
  • Flour
  • 4 Eggs, beaten
  • 1 c Corn oil or slightly salted
  • Butter


The seventeen year cicada is considered a delicacy by nearly every living
creature and when emerging, by the millions, stuff every animal for miles.
Birds have trouble getting off the ground. Foxes waddle. Garter snakes are
lumpy. Dogs and cats curl up and sleep all day. In former times, the
Native Americans found them to be a worthy addition to their diets when

The cicadas emerge at night and hang like snow white Christmas ornaments
from the trees. As they dry, their color darkens to a black with orange
decorative stripes. They are at their finest at night when they just
emerge and are still soft. They make great campfire cooking fare. For
those who are interested, they are kosher!

The best way to prepare them is to dip them, still alive, in beaten egg,
roll them in the seasoned flour and then gently saute them until they are
golden brown. They have a wonderful rich nutty flavor. Preparing them is
simplicity itself.

To find a supply of cicadas, call or write a local college or university
department of entomology. They can supply information as to which brood
will be emerging in your area or near your area. They may be able to
supply a general map and even specific dates when the emergence will occur.
Here, in Indiana, we will have to wait until about Memorial Day weekend,
2002 A.D. So you see, this is not a treat that you can just go out and
pick up at Krogers. It is worth the wait, even if it is just to say that
you have done it!

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