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Anyone for cricket... or a maggot or a worm? GRUB UP: If you're a fan of I'm A Celebrity... Get Me Out Of Here and The Bushtucker Trail, you can now try the creepy-crawlie test for yourself.

Byline: BY JAMES MCCARTHY

WE'VE all seen those former soap stars gulping down worms, maggots and crickets, in a bid to resurrect a failing career, but how would you feel having a go yourself? A travel agency is now offering you the chance. So, we sent intrepid reporter James McCarthy along to do a taste test... well, he's been bugging us all week! A TRAVEL agency in Coventry is offering customers a tasty snack inspired by the TV reality show I'm A Celebrity Get Me Out of Here.

The menu of creepy-crawlies invites visitors to munch on maggots or chew a cricket.

It's all in the worst possible taste but potential "bushtuckers" have a chance of winning pounds 500 off their next holiday.

We sent hungry reporter James McCarthy down to First Choice Holiday Hypermarket, Central Six retail park, to get stuck in.

He said: "First there were 'Chilli Flavour Worm Crisps.' Don't let the word 'crisps' fool you. These were skinny maggots. With segmented bodies and little stumpy legs they were not the tastiest looking snack.

"But dusted with chilli flavouring they really were not too bad. Not much like chilli though. Reminded me of rice crispies.

"Next up were 'Smoky Bacon Crickets.' Aside from looking like crickets these were OK. Not that I would want to eat a whole swarm.

"The crickets came in a variety of flavours. There was also 'Thai Green Curry Flavour.' Again, they were OK. Like the maggots they were mainly notable for the amount of insect skin one had to pick from one's teeth after.

"Then there were the Mopani worms. These were much nastier looking than anything else, being inch and a half long caterpillars. With a murky brown ridged skin and a series of spikes along their backs these were not exciting my palate.

"After crunching into them it became clear why the other bugs were flavoured. Mopani worms are pretty rotten. They don't taste of much really, but they leave you feeling like you've just drunk a cup of dust. Ew.

"Though this stuff was edible, if there are any celebs left in the jungle by the time this is printed they can keep their bushtucker.

"I'm not a celebrity. Keep me out of there."

BUG TREATS

Chilli worms - The worms are raised for human consumption and fed a diet of cereals and grains. This snack is healthy, as the worms are oven-baked, not fried, before being coated in flavouring.

Mopani worms - They are actually caterpillars whose protein content is three times that of beef, weight for weight. They are traditionally cooked in a stew containing tomatoes and onions. The worms are hand picked or shaken off the trees.

Thai green curry/smoky bacon crickets - Farm-raised the crickets are fed on fresh cereals and greens. They are oven-baked till crisp and tossed in a mild seasoning.

Here's a chance to try the bugs for yourself

YOU can try out the tucker tomorrow from noon until 2pm at the First Choice Holiday Hypermarket at its Central Six shop.

Those who manage to eat the snacks will be entered into a draw with a chance to win pounds 500 off a holiday.

Worldwide sales manager, Shauna Williams (left), aged 29, said: "They will have to eat a certain amount and then they will be put into a draw, so it is not guaranteed they will win.

"We have tried them this morning and they are not all that nice. I left the heads on the caterpillars.

"I would say people will have to eat at least five of everything. I don't think anyone will do it. They don't look all that good."

But unlike on the TV show, the bugs will be dead.

CAPTION(S):

LOVELY GRUBS... James McCarthy tucks into a sun-dried emperor caterpillar (top picture) with a look of relish on his face.. this is followed by some tasty chilli-flavoured worm crisps (above).Then reality kicks in (right). I'M UP FOR IT... Antony Costa, of boy band Blue is all ready for his challenge in I'm A Celebrity... Get Me Out Of Heren TASTES LIKE CHICKEN.. Covered in bugs, Antony gives one a lick.OH, WHAT THE HELL... Antony gets stuck in to the creepy-crawlies. Pictures: James Balfour
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Article Details
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Coventry Evening Telegraph (England)
Date:Dec 2, 2005
Words:708
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