After finally coming to the realization that people only go to IKEA stores to eat, the Swedish home furnishing company created Space10, a food lab that creates sustainable dishes. Skip forward a couple of years and Space 10 might have gone too far with its innovative recipes.
No, this is not a wonder pill that keeps you full and provides all the nutritional benefits you need or even a pizza that actually helps you lose weight. Space10's newest innovation is something of the Blade Runner 2049 kind.
Space10 created a menu of "future-proof classics" that are supposed to withstand the test of time and humankind’s environmental impact. That all sounds great, except for the fact that they forget to mention a few of the meals contain a bunch of bugs.
Space10 concocted five recipes – half of which sound rather simple and actually tasty. There’s ice cream made of herbs and greens, and a salad made of micro-greens that were grown in a basement. All fine choices! The next few, however, may raise some eyebrows.
Along with the salad and ice cream, there's also a "Dogless Hotdog," which just sounds like a piece of bread. Instead of meat, however, it’s made with glazed baby carrots and is topped with beet and berry ketchup and mustard and turmeric cream. The bun is made out of nutritious spirulina, an algae that at first is reminiscent of pond water, but quickly becomes an acquired taste. Not too bad in the grand scheme of things, though. But it gets worse.
Another creation is a burger. Sounds harmless enough, right? Wrong. This is Space 10, remember!? The burger is made with tasty beetroot, parsnip, and potatoes, but then is loaded with mealworms (a.k.a beetle larvae). I recommend you put down any food you have, you're going to need a strong stomach to take this all in.
Bugs are supposed to be nutritious, I get that, but like my fast food, the less I know the better.
It's unclear if this red ground meat color is added coloring, or the larvae bleeding.
The end result is very burger-like, you have to agree. You just have to get past that feeling that the white bits in the patty are unground mealworms, and remember that they probably won't come back to life and start crawling around.
The Instagram post with the burger reads: "Meet The Bug Burger—a spin of the traditional burger recipe that creates a synergy between new ingredients and old classics. What might look like a standard burger patty is actually a combination of beets, parsnips and mealworms created by our Chef-in-Residence @simonperezfood."
Next, brace yourself for this buggy meatball adorably named the "Neatball." Since this isn’t anyone’s first Space10 rodeo, cute names won’t distract us from what’s inside. Predictably, it’s also made with mealworms and was "designed to get people thinking about reducing their meat consumption, using local produce, and trying alternative proteins."
They all probably taste fine, and I guess that people all around the world eat bugs, but those who aren’t as adventurous with their meals will probably never know. Luckily, Space10 told Esquire that these buggy creations won’t be waiting for you at the end of the never-ending IKEA maze as they’re simply for research. There are no plans to add them to the store’s menu (yet) so you can all breathe a sigh of relief. For now.