Creepy meal: People relish deep fried tarantulas in Cambodia
Streetside vendors in Cambodia are selling a traditional delicacy. One described as crunchy, salty and slightly sweet. But this isn’t candied fruits or nuts...it’s edible tarantula spiders. The Skuon District in Kampong Cham province is the tarantula business hub - and right now it’s high season. During the rainy period, which starts in June, the spiders are further up their deep lairs making them easier to catch. The spiders have long been part of Cambodia’s diet but it was during the Khmer Rouge rule they became integral. About 2 million people died under the regime through execution and starvation. Insects including crickets, silkworms and tarantulas became a vital source of protein. Nowadays it is food for locals and some brave tourists too. Usually, spiders are prepared by vendors using salt, sugar, monosodium glutamate, and soup powder before being fried in hot oil. For some spiders are something to fear but in Cambodia especially - they are a meal.