Cook and Eat Trouble

Alexander Lyadov
2 min readFeb 14, 2024
Unknown photographer

Kunga Cake is a dish crafted from tightly packed midges. This ingenious culinary creation hails from the folks around the Great African Lakes region — Tanzania, Malawi, and Mozambique.

Sometimes, the swarm of Chaoborus edulis midges is so dense that the lakes appear smoky from a distance. To catch ’em, just grease up a skillet with some butter and sweep it through the swarm.

But what about the taste?

Explorer David Livingstone once noted that these midges “tasted not unlike caviar”. According to entomologist May Berenbaum, the locals devour Kunga Cake “with great enthusiasm.”

Now, why on earth?

Well, turns out, Kunga Cake is a protein powerhouse. Adventurer Bear Grylls labels it “a great survival food.” Essentially, it’s a protein bar alternative, a go-to when a square meal isn’t in sight.

While these midges don’t bite, they do make life difficult for humans. During their breeding season, swarms can stretch up to 50 km. The Africans came up with a solution that illustrates the Theory of Inventive Problem Solving:

“Let the harmful factor start bringing benefits.”

The next time fate upsets you with something you cannot change, think of Kunga Cake.

Sincerely yours,

-Alexander

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Alexander Lyadov

As a business therapist, I help tech founders increase the value of their business by unlocking the potential of their personality.