It's been a busy, exciting week. We harvested two giant hornet nests. We made honey and whiskey infused with hornets and hornet venom. We harvested so, so many wasp nests. We learnt about traditional giant hornet cuisine in two different prefectures: nimono in Gifu; sukiyaki in Aichi. We also learnt a few new ways of cooking with hornets, including a miso-based broth containing adult hornets, hornet larva tempura, and several dishes based on the way in which the larvae coagulate at high temperatures. We experienced a nine-course 'kaiseki' meal at Chikara, a restaurant in Gifu prefecture, with each course using hornets and wasps in innovative ways yet based on traditional kaiseki techniques (more details to come!). And on our last night in Kushihara, we held a mini-funeral service for the larvae that couldn't be used for cooking. Finally, we experienced the new face of insect cuisine in Japan, led by the 'Insect Cuisine Research Society', who have discovered a culinary treasure in the excrement of the cherry-tree caterpillar.
Here are a few photos: