NEW ORLEANS(WGNO) - The Audubon Butterfly Garden and Insectarium is "enhancing" the signature delicacy of the Carnival season for those craving something a bit more exotic. Cricket king cake is available to sample in the museum's popular insect kitchen, Bug Appétit, through Lundi Gras.
"At Audubon Butterfly Garden and Insectarium, we like to celebrate the holidays, bug style!" said Jayme Necaise, the director of animal and visitor programs at Audubon Butterfly Garden and Insectarium. "Why would Mardi Gras be any different? Because king cakes are a big part of the Carnival season, we decided to offer our guests a chance to eat a special cricket topped king cake."
The king cake is filled with roasted crickets, which according to Necaise lends "a nice nutty flavor," and it's topped with a crickety crunch on top, similar to a danish with pecans.
"And of course, it's decorated with purple, green and gold sugar," Necaise adds. "We couldn’t call it a king cake without that!"
The 23,000-square-foot attraction is the largest free-standing museum in the United States dedicated to insects. Thousands visit Bug Appetit every year, where exotic culinary creations are prepared by Audubon bug chefs along with fun lessons about how insects are an important alternative source of protein and a culinary delight if cooked correctly.
"So let your hair down and party with the thousands of bugs here at the Insectarium," Necaise said. "Bring your krewe on down for a slice of cricket king cake, throughout the Carnival season. You’ll be glad you did!"
Cricket king cake samples are available through Lundi Gras, Monday, February 27, 2017. The tastings are included with general admission while supplies last. Audubon Butterfly Garden and Insectarium will be closed Mardi Gras day, Tuesday, February 28, 2017.
Advance tickets are recommended and can be purchased by visiting AudubonNatureInstitute.org or at any Audubon Nature Institute attraction. Audubon Butterfly Garden and Insectarium is located at 423 Canal Street in downtown New Orleans in the U.S. Custom House.