This white man chowing down on monpane worms (caterpillars) at Long Barn Tavern in Knysna last night led to the breaking of a stereotype. 3 black gentlemen asked me what it was and, after a taste, 2 of them ordered a plate too:)
I shared my evening’s eating habits with a few by sms. Yollande, a matric student at Percy Mdala was the first to respond with, “No, I don’t envy you with your Mapone worms, my dear, I’d rather starve than eat that!” Dee warned me that they turn into moths:) Another Yolande (from NumNum Foods) told me to enjoy the protein.
Gonimbrasia belina is the correct term and mopane (or mopani) is derived from the tree of the same name that they favour. According to Wikipedia, South Africa trades 1.6 million kg annually – wow!
You can buy a plate with mopane worms, sauce and rice for only R30 at Long Barn Tavern in Nelson Street behind Knysna Mall.