Famous yellow ant salad of the Ro Mam people

In Le village, about 160 households with 460 people live close to the mountains and forests of the Central Highlands. The unique yellow ant salad of this nation is only available on festivals or when receiving distinguished guests.

Famous yellow ant salad of the Ro Mam people - Photo 1.

Unique yellow ant salad

Ingredients to make weaver ant salad include stream fish, weaver ants, weaver ant eggs and some types of forest leaves. Large stream fish are filleted, bones and skin removed, then minced with lemongrass and chili, placed in a large bowl.

Then, a person will shake the tree branch so that the yellow ants fall from the nest into the bowl. At this time, the ants will rush in to bite the fish meat and secrete fluid to cook the fish. Wait for about half an hour, the maker adds cleaned ant eggs, mixes the ingredients with his hands, squeezes out the water and completes the yellow ant salad.

Famous yellow ant salad of the Ro Mam people - Photo 2.

Large stream fish are boned and skin removed and then minced with lemongrass and chili

Mr. A Khai in Le village said that when weaver ants burn fish meat, they will secrete fluid that causes the fish to cook slowly and have a very characteristic sour taste. For the right taste, you must use stream fish to be more delicious, sweeter and more delicate. Yellow ants need to find large ant nests, including ant eggs to make salad. Making ant salad is very simple, but someone must “sacrifice”. That’s the person who goes to the nest to catch ants.

Famous yellow ant salad of the Ro Mam people - Photo 3.

Weaver ant salad is often eaten with many types of forest leaves

“Ants not only fall into the fish bowl but can also fall and sting all over the body. Yellow ant stings do not hurt, they just feel uncomfortable. But only then will eating a piece of salad be delicious” – Mr. Khai said with a smile.

Famous yellow ant salad of the Ro Mam people - Photo 4.

Making this dish requires someone to bear the brunt of being bitten by ants

After being squeezed dry, the ant salad will be placed in the middle of a tray of wild leaves including many types such as bamboo leaves, young mangoes, laksa leaves… When eating, each person will pluck a type of leaf, fold the leaves into a funnel shape and then pick up the ant salad for them. in the middle, add a little salt, roll up and enjoy.

Roll a piece of ant salad into your mouth. The sweetness of the fish meat, the fatty taste of ant eggs, the sour taste of weaver ants and the accompanying vegetables blend together to create a very unique flavor. The fish salad is light, sweet and has absolutely no fishy smell of raw fish.

According to Mr. A Khai, his ancestors used to live in the forest and rarely used fire, so they found simple and natural ingredients to prepare like ant salad. Over time, people also changed the ant salad dish by roasting rice and grinding it into small pieces, making it more fragrant when eaten.

According to Mr. Vo Hoang Son, Principal of Vo Nguyen Giap Primary and Secondary School (Sa Thay district, Kon Tum province), hearing the name, many people at first found it very strange and scared, not daring to eat it. However, once you eat it, you will be immediately addicted to it because of its unique, greasy flavor. If you come to Ro Mam people, you must definitely enjoy this ant salad.