Eating Mopane Worms

A yummy snack for Reis

(Reis) My stomach lurches as if being tugged, as the rancid smell of Fried Mopane Worms reaches my nose. You may think “Why does he have a Mopane Worm?” Well if you really want to know, I was about to eat one.

We pulled up to the cattle post and the stench of cow and goat dung filled the air. We hopped out of the car and sauntered to the cluster of huts. A lady wearing a head dress greeted us. We walked into the “Dining Room” and each took a seat in the chairs. Each of the lunch pots were filled to the brim with interesting delectables. On the far right of the buffet there was sorghum, a cooked oat-like grain. Next to that was polenta, a dish made with maize that looks somewhat like mashed potatoes. To the left of that was boiled spinach. Then shredded beef. Then next to that, the dreaded African specialty, Mopane Worms.

I sat back in my chair and gazed at the African Cuisine All-You-Can-Eat-Bar, which, after examining the food closely, was not very much. I then decided I was not very hungry. “Who wants one?” my dad asks. My siblings and I suddenly grew intensely interested in our sneakers. Andrew, with new found strength, volunteers. “Okay I am going to do it,” says Andrew half-heartedly. He brings it up to his mouth. “No, I can’t do it!” he confesses, giving up. I decide in order to be brave I have to at least get one on my plate. “I’m going to eat it,” I exclaim, taking everyone by surprise. I bring the caterpillar up to my mouth, closer, closer, closer, BAM, I pop the worm in. The taste explodes from the former insect. Rotten shoe leather and impala dung, mixed, is a good way to describe the taste. It took a while to get it down, but the only thing I was focused on was the finish line. “Come on Reis,” both me and my family said. I stuffed a piece of beef into my mouth, to try to put a damper on the taste. RESULT: NEGATIVE.

I gnawed on it longer, almost regurgitating once or twice. I gobbled the rest down and took a big swig of water. I was then left with two proud parents, three astonished siblings and one bad tasting mouth.

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16 Responses to “Eating Mopane Worms”

  1. Where is the video of Mr. White eating the caterpillar???

  2. Headmaster Greg 01. Sep, 2010 at 7:03 am

    I assure you, LD, that the Headmaster ate a big, thick juicy one. His stoic countenance while eating made for poor video in comparison with the more animated worm eaters.

  3. Fear Factor has nothing on the Whites!! I’m going to play this video whenever Robbie and Grady won’t eat something. Thanks.

  4. Ok…my stomach hurts now! Makes lizard tails look appetizing. Peter got his braces off today and he would not smile until Anne Marie told him to envision eating lizard tails and happy memories of the Whites!

  5. Hi Reis,

    I am so impressed with you all for trying new foods. I find it easier trying new foods when they don’t look like what they were before being cooked or prepared for dinner. 😉
    I’m proud of you all. Glad to know that the Headmaster also tried this ‘tasty’ treat.

    Bon Appetit,
    Mrs. Chase

  6. When does MR. white eat a worm?

  7. So much of what we’ve seen we say…”OH MAN!! Wish we could do that!” Not this time 🙂 You are a brave soul, Reis.

  8. That is fabulous. The video got stuck a few times giving us extra looks at some great expressions. (They were not happy expressions.) Great job, Reis! You took one for the team.


  9. That is…. GROSS!!! Are you missing good old american food? I would never have eaten those worms. Great job! Miss you!

  10. HI how are you we miss you. im trying out for Open fields.hope i make it. email me by the way that made me sick.
    Keep on trukin

  11. hi guys! that video was so funny! how is the trip so far? tell your family i say hi!


  12. Carlys sister Olivia 10. Oct, 2010 at 5:20 pm

    Hi White family,
    thats sounds yummy!!!!!

  13. Julia Beardwood 31. Oct, 2010 at 10:30 pm

    Dear Whitees-

    My family is loving living vicariously through your exploits – thank you for that. Your mopane worms remind of us eating silkworms and scorpions in vietnam this summer. The absolute most gross item to look forward to, however, is the duck embryo in its shell! Or is it the whole frogs, it’s hard to pick!
    My brother Mark and wife Caroline are living in Hanoi this year, along with Jemimah 15 and Isabel 11, so stop by if you are near at hand.
    Jonathan and I loved Halong Bay and envy you all a trip there off season.

    Very best,


  14. Alex Martiros 15. Nov, 2010 at 5:53 pm

    To the Whites:
    You all are so brave to go out into the world and do what you are doing! I would be scared just to ride in a boat, not to mention going around the world in it! I miss you all, and espesially Emma. See you guys in September!

  15. That’s very gross, but very cool!

  16. sophie hunter 09. Dec, 2010 at 5:23 pm

    that is very gross but u guys are very brave for trying it haha see you guys in september