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Ants and their larvae are eaten in different parts of the world. The eggs of two species of ants are the basis for the dish in Mexico known as escamoles.

Description

Ants and their larvae are eaten in different parts of the world. The eggs of two species of ants are the basis for the dish in Mexico known as escamoles. They are considered a form of insect caviar and can sell for as much as 40 USD per pound because they are seasonal and hard to find. In the Colombian department of Santander, hormigas culonas (roughly interpreted as "large-bottomed ants") Atta laevigata are toasted alive and eaten.

In areas of India, and throughout Burma and Thailand, a paste of the green weaver ant (Oecophylla smaragdina) is served as a condiment with curry.Weaver ant eggs and larvae as well as the ants themselves may be used in a Thai salad, yum ), in a dish called yum khai mod daeng or red ant egg salad, a dish that comes from the Issan or north-eastern region of Thailand. Saville-Kent, in the Naturalist in Australia wrote "Beauty, in the case of the green ant, is more than skin-deep. Their attractive, almost sweetmeat-like translucency possibly invited the first essays at their consumption by the human species". Mashed up in water, after the manner of lemon squash, "these ants form a pleasant acid drink which is held in high favor by the natives of North Queensland, and is even appreciated by many European palates".

In his First Summer in the Sierra, John Muir notes that the Digger Indians of California ate the tickly acid gasters of the large jet-black carpenter ants. The Mexican Indians eat the replete workers, or living honey-pots, of the honey ant