The mud creeper is not just a delicious dish; it is also a symbol of the unique culture of the Ca Mau region. Why has it become a specialty of this region? Let’s explore the interesting details about this special dish in the article below.
1What is the mud creeper?
The mud creeper is an insect that inhabits the non-blossoming buds of the natural mud creeper tree. This tree is similar to coconut or betel nut. The mud creeper is a special type of insect that appears during the reproductive process of hard-winged insects like ants or beetles. These insects lay eggs in holes on the mud creeper tree between October and February according to the lunar calendar. The eggs then go through the larval period and become mud creepers.
As the mud creeper develops, it consumes nutrients from the tree buds and grows to a size similar to a little finger. It is covered in a soft white shell. Unlike many other types of creepers, the mud creeper does not have fur and does not have a black intestine.
The adult mud creeper is quite large, sometimes as big as an index finger or thumb. These characteristics make it easy for buyers to distinguish mud creeper from other types of creepers, such as coconut creeper.
2How to enjoy the mud creeper
To find the mud creeper, people have to wade into the mangrove forest to search for areas with wild mud creeper trees. Based on experience and skills, they carefully choose a cluster of young mud creepers to catch. The wild mud creeper has many thorns and lives in clusters, so caution is required when finding branches with mud creeper.
Once found, people use a knife to cut the entire stem of the tree and extract the mud creeper for processing. This method ensures that the mud creeper of Ca Mau is always fresh and maintains its high nutritional value.
Although it is expensive, the mud creeper is a must-try dish for food connoisseurs. There are many ways to enjoy the mud creeper of Ca Mau, such as eating it directly or bathing it in a traditional way.
In addition, the mud creeper of Ca Mau can be grilled on charcoal and served with dipping sauce. It can also be cooked or steamed to bring out unique flavors. Each cooking style offers a distinctive taste and way of enjoying the dish.
To enjoy the unique flavor of the mud creeper of Ca Mau, people can clean it and then coat it with a layer of batter. It can be deep-fried in hot oil until golden and then served. The delightful taste of this dish is not only fragrant but also captivating to anyone who tries it.
3How much does the mud creeper cost? Where can you buy it?
Due to the challenging exploitation process, the price of the mud creeper is relatively high, several times that of the coconut creeper. Currently, the price of the mud creeper varies depending on the crop season, supply and demand, and the place of purchase. It ranges from 40,000 to 65,000 VND per piece, which is 3-4 times the price of the coconut creeper.
The mud creeper of Ca Mau is an exceptional specialty of the Cape region. From the natural mud creeper tree to the appearance of the mud creeper, every aspect contributes to the unique flavor of this dish. If you have the opportunity to visit Ca Mau, do not forget to try the mud creeper and experience the distinctive taste of this cape land.