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Flying African Termites, the all-time delicacy for Ugandans

Flying African Termites, the all-time delicacy for Ugandans
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Written by See Africa Today

Across Africa, Uganda has the most intriguing history about white ants better known as the flying African termites.

For Ugandans, these insects are a rich source of protein and not destructive as deemed by many in the rest of Africa.  Scientifically though, termites have been proven to have a higher protein content compared to red meat. White ants are also rich in fat.

Interestingly, Ugandans have adopted unique methods of collecting termites using nests or digging deep beneath the anthills where the queen rests. Once the queen is captured, this is considered a real victory and the dish is astoundingly delicious.

Usually, termites are collected during migration at the beginning of the rainy season in Central, West and South Africa where they swarm. The collection involves the use of nets which are hung around lamps to lure the white ants (termites). Once the light shines, they head to the direction it is emitted from and onto the net.

Another method used in the collection of the termites involves the use of water on termite moulds during the dry season. This triggers them to migrate thinking the wet season is on.

Once they sprinkle water, drumbeats resembling the sound of raindrops hitting the ground starts as more water is sprinkled into the moulds triggering a migration. Once the termites start moving, they are directed to a path leading to a container where they are trapped and eaten raw though they are supposed to be cooked.

Nonetheless, termites are the main delicacy during the wet season as the farms literally produce nothing. Once collected/harvested, they are washed and their wings removed. They are placed on a hot pan and some hot water is added and cooking goes on until all the water is gone. At this point, you add some oil or butter to the hot pan and fry then for a few minutes and they are ready.

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About the author

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See Africa Today

Pharis Kinyua is the editor of See Africa Today. With over seven years of experience in digital media, he has a soft spot for African tours and travel. His drive is to tell the rest of the world what Africa offers, the best accommodation facilities, national parks, culture, shopping malls and best airline deals to travel to Africa

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