Deep-Fried Tarantula

Deep-Fried Tarantula
Staff Writer
Chugrad McAndrews

Unlike heavily armored grasshoppers, beetles, and other land anthropods, tarantulas wear an outer layer of chitin that is comparatively thin and pliable. That's right: their eight muscular limbs are chewy, not crunchy. As such, the plentiful meat on one of these animals is more accessible and, hence, the makings for a savory spider soirée. 

4
Servings
240
Calories Per Serving
Deliver Ingredients

Ingredients

For the tempura batter

  • medium egg
  • 1/2  Cup  cold water
  • 1/2  Cup  all-purpose flour
  • 1/2  Teaspoon  baking soda

For the deep-fried tarantula

  • 2  Cups  canola or vegetable oil
  • frozen adult Texas brown, Chilean rose, or similar-sized tarantulas, thawed
  • 1  Cup  tempura
  • 1  Teaspoon  smoked paprika

Directions

For the tempura batter

To make the batter, beat the egg in a small mixing bowl until smooth. Slowly add the cold water, continuing to beat until evenly mixed. Add the flour and baking soda and beat gently until combined; the batter should be a bit lumpy.

Let the batter sit at room temperature while heating the oil.

For the deep-fried tarantula

In a deep saucepan or deep-fat fryer, heat the oil to 350 degrees.

With a sharp knife, sever and discard the abdomens from the two tarantulas. Singe off any of the spider’s body hairs with a crème brûlée torch or butane cigarette lighter.

Dip each spider into the tempura batter to thoroughly coat. Use a slotted spoon or your hands to make sure each spider is spread-eagled (so to speak) and not clumped together before dropping it into the hot oil.

Deep-fry the spiders, one at a time, until the batter is lightly browned, about 1 minute. Remove each spider from the oil and place it on paper towels to drain.

Use a sharp knife to cut each spider in two lengthwise. Sprinkle with the paprika and serve. Encourage your guests to try the legs first and, if still hungry, to nibble on the meat-filled mesothorax, avoiding the spider’s paired fangs, which are tucked away in the head region.

Nutritional Facts

Total Fat
3g
4%
Sugar
2g
2%
Saturated Fat
1g
4%
Cholesterol
1mg
0%
Carbohydrate, by difference
45g
35%
Protein
7g
15%
Vitamin A, RAE
43µg
6%
Vitamin K (phylloquinone)
3µg
3%
Calcium, Ca
43mg
4%
Choline, total
4mg
1%
Fiber, total dietary
3g
12%
Folate, total
125µg
31%
Iron, Fe
4mg
22%
Magnesium, Mg
25mg
8%
Manganese, Mn
1mg
56%
Niacin
5mg
36%
Phosphorus, P
93mg
13%
Selenium, Se
20µg
36%
Sodium, Na
376mg
25%
Thiamin
1mg
91%
Water
95g
4%
Zinc, Zn
1mg
13%

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