Culture is defined as a people’s way of life, what they believe to be right or wrong, what they wear, how they act, what they celebrate. Every other aspect of their life is encapsulated under it.
Food is an essential aspect of culture because it’s a great necessity and the fuel that keeps the human body going and keeps the body in form.
Different geo political zones/tribes in Nigeria have come up with different delicacies they call food and believe that their consumptions have key roles to play as body soldiers.
Couldn’t get over the shock when a friend told me she eats grasshoppers and I’m like ‘girl, we hunted and killed those things on my school field during sports in primary school. I can remember they even appear in different colours and have funny smells.
My next question was how did you even munch that thing in your mouth? She was like, ‘Oh we call it locust/Fara’. In my head I was like, ‘don’t ‘funkier’ it, grasshopper is grasshopper woman!’
Then she told me it’s very delicious.
One thing I have noticed about her is that anything declared edible is worth trying for my dear friend. Her response made me embark on a quest, asking people if they’ve ever tried grasshoppers before. To my greatest surprise many said they’ve tried it while some gave me a disgusting emoji reply like, hell no!
On more research, I discovered grasshoppers are commonly eaten in the North. For many people who were born and raised there as well as those who relocated to the North for one reason or the other, grasshoppers are delicious.
Is the same with many other people across the country.
It is a known fact that adaptation has a vital role in determining what people eat and find less edible. When people travel on a tour to a new geographical location, many of them learn a new culture, in the process they find themselves adjusting their food culture. The eat what their hosts eat as a way to show total acceptance of the host’s values and culture.
Culture is believed to be shared through a whole lot of things and food culture is definitely a great deal when talking about culture.
Fried grasshoppers or locusts is a snack people of the North-eastern part of Nigeria cherish. The native name for the snack is ‘Fara’.
For people who love to explore and try new food, below is how to prepare Fara and its benefits:
Process in preparing Fara
After hunting for grasshoppers or locusts like the northerners call it , you cut off the legs and wings, then wash and use spices to season them. After that you parboil. After parboiling, you dry them in the sun for 24hrs before deep frying.
The locusts come out really crunchy after deep frying and it is best served with dried pepper called ‘yaji’ which is made out of other healthy spices like grounded ginger, cayenne powder (grounded cayenne pepper), smoked paprika powder, onion powder, garlic powder and chicken bouillon powder.
Fara (grasshoppers) is said to provide disease fighting antioxidants. They are also high in protein and fat but low in carbohydrates.
If you’re willing to add to your antibodies, grasshoppers (Fara) are another free and not expensive antioxidant you can get. Just go to a field or bush, hunt as many grasshoppers as you can.
You can also make Fara as what you would want anyone coming from the northern part of the country to get for you.
If you’re adventurous enough, when next you make a trip up North, give a Fara seller a visit and share your experience in the comment section. I’m about to munch my last grasshoppers. ‘Smiles’!