While we were having fun discussing a tax on cows just the other day, I was also busy in my kitchen making delicious burgers. Fake burgers actually. Like the American Impossible Burgers, only this is a Danish product available in my local supermarket.
The plant-based minced meat substitute from Naturli Foods that was recently introduced by one of the largest grocery retailers in Denmark, serving 1.5 million customers everyday, has apparently conquered a loyal fan base.
Now, before I show you my burger, take a look at what I was hoping for:
The product has proven very popular already and Naturli Foods is planning to expand because of it. People are genuinely astonished by this product and they aren’t sure how to react. Hardcore meat lovers at traditional meat restaurants present a funny face when chefs with shaking hands make them taste this.
I decided to give it a try. But I was not sure why. Was it because it supposedly would be the environmentally responsible alternative to meat? You could just buy veggies — or like, anything not meat. Was it because it supposedly looks, tastes, and feels just like meat? Well, that’s just weird right?
OK, I couldn’t answer any of these questions, and because of the promised look, taste, and feel of this product, it intrigued me. It contains soya, wheat, almonds, mushrooms, coconut, beetroot, tomato etc. So, onward with the haute cuisine in my IKEA kitchen then.
This stuff looks and feels like meat to a degree that kind of scares me. There are even fine specks of white fatty bits in it, from coconut oil I guess. And by now, thoughts start bothering me about why this product has to be like the real thing? What is real anyway?
But let’s not jump to conclusions. So, after some fun in the kitchen, here is my humble result (I really outdid myself and baked the bun myself too!):
And here’s the thing: It tastes really good! At this point, let me just make it clear that I have not been in contact with Naturli Foods, and have no relationship with the company whatsoever, just citing news from elsewhere.
The only thing that can make my opinion biased is a sense of the importance of limiting the consumption of meat as a whole, because production apparently is such a heavy environmental burden on the globe, although I must admit I do not know enough on the subject to really be in a position to lecture anyone about it.
But yeah, this fake meat really tastes good! I mean, really good. It surprised me. Even the next day, heating one of those fake beef slugs in the microwave, the result was yet again juicy and tasty. Not dry and hard like real meat would be. So this is better than real meat? Yes, I mean, no… This is where I get confused. Made some spaghetti with the stuff later to try another context too. Didn’t help much. Still bloody delicious!
This stuff even feels good afterwards. Good sense of fullness. No sense of bloatedness (not really sure that’s even a word). Just hit the sofa hard and watch a movie. And that made me think of this scene in The Matrix Reloaded:
Chypher (Reagan): “I know this steak doesn’t exist. I know that when I put it in my mouth, the matrix is telling my brain that it is juicy and delicious. After 9 years you know what I realized? Ignorance is bliss.”
That’s it! What this product does is it convinces me that fake can be good! Heck, fake can even be better than the real thing! Who cares if the meat in my burger originates from a farting, belching cow, right? In fact, why not give that cow a break? Just to be on the safe side. If this kind of product had come first, the idea of real minced meat might not have had a commercial chance anyway.
Not to mention real fake meat, like lab grown meat from stem cells of a cow. You may encounter a steak from a meat called Angus, but not from some breeded cattle race, but from one single bull actually called Angus, that will live a happy life never in danger of being slaughtered. Douglas Adams didn’t even think of this in The Restaurant at the End of the Universe, where he made the poor talking cow kill itself.
So what is real anyway? If observed reality is indeed just a simulation like depicted in The Matrix, this whole thing won’t matter one bit. However, as the title of this article implies, fake products like plant-based fake minced meat may point in the direction of some crazy luck for us:
Elon Musk boldly states: “There’s a one in billions chance we’re in base reality.” But hey, if this is a simulation, and some higher dimensional species are just playing high-dim-sims with us as characters, why in the world would they setup parameters for us to come up with a ridiculous concept like fake meat? That does not make any sense at all!
So be it
I can’t help feeling that if we as humans with our flawed and irrational brain functions really are destroying everything, we would have been gone a long time ago. I know that the Fermi paradox may point in the direction that the concept of a balanced world housing imperfect humans (not perfect life) for eons is utterly improbable, and thus, if this is a simulation, then we would have been restarted long ago. Nobody in their right higher dimensional mind would bear to watch the atrocities here on Earth at length.
Unless this actually is base reality. With which, any stupid, ridiculous, and crazy idea is utterly probable, and the very means of assured human success. Maybe we are lucky…