What Parts on a Frog Are Edible?

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Frogs are prized worldwide for their meaty legs.
Frogs are prized worldwide for their meaty legs. (Image: PhotoObjects.net/PhotoObjects.net/Getty Images)

Frogs are famous little amphibians. From their appearance in the Biblical narrative of Israel’s exodus from Egypt to their legs being a national food dish in France, frogs have been both hated and enjoyed by humans for millennia. In certain parts of the world, just the legs are eaten, while in others such as parts of Asia, entire frogs are used in soup.

Frog Facts

While frogs and bullfrogs are eaten around the globe, perhaps the best frog for eating is the Pelophylax kl. esculentus. This "edible mud frog" is green with brown spots and is prized through central Europe for its tasty legs. They eat mainly spiders, flies and other insects. More than 20 species of edible frogs are eaten around the world. Exercise caution when using wild frogs for cooking as there are many poisonous species of frogs in the world. Many of the poisonous varieties are characterized as being small and very colorful. In the wild, these frogs' bright colors warn predators to stay away.

Frog Legs

Frog legs are the most commonly eaten part of edible frogs and bullfrogs around the world. The leg meat is tender and mild in flavor. It is often fried and seasoned with a mixture of spices including garlic powder, cayenne, onion powder and salt. The flavor of frog legs is often compared to chicken. North American frog legs tend to be larger than European ones. Frog legs can be grilled, as well as breaded and fried, or baked, sauteed or poached.

Bullfrog Back Meat

Bullfrogs are larger frogs prevalent in the American South, especially along states near the gulf of Mexico. Large bullfrogs can be skinned, and the meat off of their backs can be eaten along with the legs. A relatively hearty strip of meat can be gleaned off the back of the bullfrog, seasoned and grilled, baked, breaded and fried or added to stew.

Entire Frog

Some recipes, such as frog soup, call for using the entire frog. The legs are first removed from a large number, about 25, whole frogs which are then added to boiling water and allowed to become nearly translucent. Then, they along with other soup ingredients are pureed in a food processor and returned to a skillet where they are sauteed with frog legs and ultimately served as frog soup. In other countries, like Vietnam, the frog is cleaned first of its skin and entrails and then chopped into medium pieces and added to a soup. Frog porridge is a common dish created from frog meat, oyster sauce, chili spice, parsley and onion.

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