April 07, 2006

Worm Soufflé

I like to buy local goods. It encourages local production and provides income to the Congo. But mainly, let's be honest, it makes me feel good about myself.

Anyways, so I buy local flour called Midema (for Minoterie de Matadi). It comes in a neat little white cloth bag. If you were to buy a local sand painting, you'd most often see it painted on the back of a Midema flour sac. If you were to buy mangosteen's at the market, you'd shelter from the sun under a umbrella made from Midema flour sacs. Heck, they even sell bathrobes made from the stuff.



Yesterday, I was feeling very ambitious and decided to make cheese soufflé. I started making the roux (a mix of butter and flour, heated over low heat) and poured in the milk little by little to finish making the Béchamel sauce. I suddenly spotted little brown flecks in the mix and, fairly sure I hadn't added to pepper yet, squinted and got closer to the pot. There were little translucent flecks with brown reticulations.

Suspecting the flour, I went to the bag and shook it a little bit. Nothing. The best solution was to start the sauce again, making sure that the flour was well sifted. And sure enough, the specks left in the sieve were little squiggling flour worms. The trouble is that some of them were too small to eliminate. I thought about this over a glass of wine, shrugged, and decided to make the soufflé anyways.

I am proud to say that it was a damn good dish (it puffed up around the edge and all). Worm soufflé anyone?

12 comments:

Victoria said...

Yummm! I'm proud of you. As dad would say: an excellent source of protein.
This reminds me of the time our brother found maggots in his lunch... hahaha.

Dinamita said...

No thanks, I'm vegetarian ;)

Anonymous said...

I brought some flour home to my mom from Kenya once and our kitchen was infested with aphids for a year. Yikes!

verniciousknids said...

When in Congo...

giovanni.cristofano@tin.it said...

May we have a pic of OO7 wearing a tailor-made sack ? strudel

Red Handed Jill said...

hee hee it makes me think of that song, nobody likes me, everybody hates me, guess i'll go eat worms...

Anonymous said...

I hope you know what happens to people when they eat flour worms...
-Ammo

Garci said...

After spending some time in DRC... you learn to ignore expiration dates, re-freezing thawed food... (it happens on its own, with each power cut), small maggots and the ocational critter in your food. Dont look too close in your pasta, as those guys usually make it there as well.

But in the end, its just a nice source of protein.... And if the rest of your guests don't know about it... they won't mind!.

By the way... I once found a small cockroach in the sauce of my dish in a "very fancy" restaurant in Kinshasa....

I just won't name it...

Hope you're coping with the work-overload
Diego

Carl said...

The Royal Navy ate wormy biscuits and ruled the oceans for hundreds of years. Who knows where this diet will take you.

Anonymous said...

You've inspired me - I now want to make a soufflé. Do you really have to use that special dish?

jke said...

LOL. That's the extra meat bonus :-)

Congogirl said...

When I was around 12, we had an infestation in the cereal box, which until that time was my favorite - Basic 4. It had grains, fruit, nuts for protein, and with milk, made a nice well-rounded meal covering all 4 food groups.

Once my brother piped up with, "Oh look! Now it's Basic 5!" I had a hard time stomaching it after that.