Edible Worms In Hainan – Peanut Worms

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I was petrified when my sister-in-law served these edible worms for the first time. My village folks had kind intentions. They specially cooked a bowl of Peanut Worm (Sipunculus nudus) Soup for me as it was a cold wintry day. It had been raining for days in my hometown Qionghai.

The night before, I was feeling extremely cold as the temperature dropped to 13°C. I was wearing layers of clothing and wrapped in a quilt blanket. I have got used to an average temperature of 32°C  in Singapore for decades, 13°C is too cold for me.

Peanut Worms Soup

live peanut worms

Very early the next morning, my elderly brother-in-law cycled to the seafood vendor to buy some live peanut worms. My sister-in-law cleaned and cooked them. She cooked the bowl of soup just for me!

My elder said peanut worms nourish the blood and provide a lot of protein. They are costly too.  Awww … how could I refuse when they spend what little they have to give me a nourishing meal.

When I took the first bite of the worm, I felt like I was chewing a rubber tube. As they are marine worms, the taste is slightly salty. Be careful though, some still contain sand if they are not cleaned properly .

After eating a few of them, the tastes get better. It has a crunchy bite and tasted like duck intestines. My mouth grew tired chewing them. LOL ….  It’s a marine worm so there’s the taste of the sea and it was very fresh as my family bought them live. The soup was sweet and delicious.

Hainan Delicacy

During poverty times, my elders used to dig these worms for food and protein. But they are now banned from doing that. These worms are sold for high profits. Once a poor man’s food, now it is a delicacy for the rich.

Commonly found in temperate or tropical waters of Hainan, these edible worms hide in sand burrows. They are sensitive to their environment and cannot survive in polluted waters.  The ones I ate were around 7 cm in length, but they can reach up to 25 cm (9.8 in).

They are also available in dried form. I had dried peanut worms added to my Hainan noodles at a popular Lingshui sour rice noodle stall. They taste yummy when fried, added to porridge or cooked in soups.

dried peanut worms

Things to eat in Hainan : Peanut worms, Lingshui Sour Rice Noodles (陵水酸粉).


在海南,冷空气来了, 家人就煮了一碗沙虫汤给我吃🤭 看第一眼就吓死了 😱 不过当我知道沙虫价格不菲,乡下的家人还特地买来为我补身子,我很感动。

丑丑的沙虫含丰富蛋白质, 味道鲜美脆嫩。👍🏻😋 被誉为“海洋虫草”, 它的食疗价值不输海参。沙虫可炖汤、煮粥或炸香香地吃。不过有沙子,一定要弄干净。


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