How to Cook Tarantula Spiders

Properly prepared tarantulas make one of the most delicious and texturally satisfying entrées and are on a par with another tasty delight, the lobster. You might think this is typical recipe hyperbole… until you read what “The Bug Chef” has to say about batter-fried tarantulas:
David George Gordon further explains that if you want to fry up an unusual taste for your family or guests, one of the larger tarantulas fills the bill because the exoskeleton is relatively thin and pliable, making batter-fried, muscle-filled legs chewy and not crunchy.
Each recipe serves 4.

Ingredients
Batter-fried tarantulas:

2 palm-sized adult tarantulas, live or frozen – available locally or online These should be similar in size to the Chilean rose tarantula also known as the rose hair Tarantula (Grammostola rosea) or

similar in size to the Texas brown tarantula—also known as the Oklahoma Brown tarantula or Missouri tarantula—(Aphonopelma hentzi)

2 cups canola or vegetable oil

1 tsp. smoked paprika

1 cup tempura batter (see below)

Tempura batter:

⅔ cup flour

2 tsp. corn starch

1 cup seltzer water, chilled

Pan-fried, garlic-flavored tarantulas:

2 “a-ping” tarantulas, alive or frozen – available online
These spiders are also known as “the edible spider” or as the Thai zebra tarantula (Haplopelma albostriatum).

1 tsp. MSG (mono-sodium glutamate) – optional

2 tbsp. sugar

2 tsp. sea salt

4 garlic cloves, crushed

Cooking oil

Grilled, skewered tarantulas:

2 palm-sized adult tarantulas, live or frozen – available locally or online These should be similar in size to the Chilean rose tarantula also know as the rose hair Tarantula (Grammostola rosea) or

similar in size to the Texas brown tarantula—also known as the Oklahoma brown tarantula or Missouri tarantula—(Aphonopelma hentzi)

Sea salt

Pepper, freshly ground

Steps
Batter-fried tarantulas
Making the tempura batter
Whisk an egg in a medium mixing bowl.

Stir in 1 cup chilled seltzer water. The sparkling water makes for a lighter batter, though you can use tap water or bottled water— the colder, the better.

Add the flour and corn starch a bit at a time, stirring minimally. Traditional batter (in Japan) is made by stirring briefly with a couple of chopsticks.
It is OK to leave lumps in the batter and is best not to over-stir the batter as doing so tends to toughen the coating.

Make the tempura batter just before use. It is best made fresh and not stored for later use.

Frying the tarantulas
Heat the oil to 350℉ (175℃) in a small, deep saucepan.

Remove the abdomens from the tarantulas. Sever with a sharp knife, then discard the abdomens. Although some strong-stomached individuals happily consume the abdomens, tarantula abdomens are filled with a dark brown paste which contains the heart, the digestive system, and any eggs that might be developing.

Singe off any hairs with a crème brûlée torch or butane cigarette lighter. After singeing the hairs, run your fingers over the legs to remove the hair remnants and, at the same time, spread the legs evenly around the spider (as well as you can).

Coat one spider at a time in the tempura batter, then drop the spider into the hot oil.

Deep-fry each tarantula until the batter coating is lightly browned (about 1 minute), then place on a paper towel to drain.

Cut each spider in half lengthwise, sprinkle with paprika, and serve.

Pan-fried, garlic-flavored tarantulas
Mix the sugar, MSG (optional), and sea salt in a shallow bowl.

Remove the abdomen from each spider and discard.

Prepare the tarantulas by singeing the hairs with a flame, rubbing off the hair remnants, then spreading and flattening the legs.

Bring the cooking oil to temperature in a frying pan. The oil should be about 350℉ (175℃) and below the smoke point.

Add the crushed garlic and fry until fully fragrant.

Wet the tarantulas slightly and coat with the sugar/salt/(MSG) mixture.

Place the tarantulas in the frying pan and cook on each side about one minute.

Remove from the oil and drain on paper towels.

Cut lengthwise and serve.

Grilled, skewered tarantulas
Remove the abdomen from each spider and discard. Sever with a sharp knife, then discard the abdomens. Although some individuals happily consume the abdomens, tarantula abdomens are filled with a dark brown paste which contains most of the vital organs, including the digestive/elimination system and eggs which may be in various stages of development.

Prepare the tarantulas by singeing the hairs with a flame, rubbing off the hair remnants, then spreading and flattening the legs.

Place each spider on a skewer and grill for two to three minutes. Cooking time will, obviously, depend upon the size of the tarantula and temperature of the grill or open flame. When you feel that the legs are done, you can opt to remove them and continue to cook the mesothorax for a while.

Sprinkle the grilled tarantula with sea salt and freshly ground pepper, then cut lengthwise and serve.

Tips
The mesothorax contains an ample amount of whitish meat.

Properly grilled tarantula legs will be crunchy on the outside and chewy on the inside, while properly fried tarantula legs should be chewy and not so crispy.

Warnings
Do not eat the venomous fangs or the area of the head adjacent to the fangs.

Do not overheat the oil.

Things You’ll Need
Mixing bowls

Measuring cups and spoons

Mixing spoons

Whisk (optional)

Paper towels

Crème brûlée torch or butane cigarette lighter

Skewers (for grilled, skewered tarantulas)

Frying pan (for pan-fried, garlic-flavored tarantulas)

Deep, small size sauce pan (for batter-fried tarantulas)

Tongs (for batter-fried tarantulas)

Related wikiHows
Eat an Insect or Arachnid

Cook Grasshoppers

Identify a Tarantula Spider

Identify Spiders

Sources and Citations
http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/Deep-Fried-Tarantula-Spider-51184810 – Original source for batter-fried tarantulas

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fried_spider – Original source for pan-fried, garlic-flavored tarantulas

http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/tempura-batter-recipe.html – Original source for tempura batter recipe

Link: http://popquizhelp.com/content/how-cook-tarantula-spiders Company: http://texasintegratedservices.com
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