Impossible foods veggie burger ()Impossible foods veggie burger () © Copyright

Meat free meat

Getting the V just got a whole lot meatier.

If you give up meat, you can save money, be healthy, help the planet, be nice to animals and alleviate world hunger (we could be feeding the world’s poor with the 12kg of grain we use to produce 1kg of beef). But warnings of impending environmental doom and high cholesterol usually fail to stack up against the case for not ditching meat – the mouth-watering taste of a delicious burger.

Vegan substitutes for meat are getting pretty good – Cauldron sausages (ASDA, £2 for six) are absolutely banging – but veggie burgers are a myth.

About six years ago, a team of scientists in the US starting studying every aspect of the burger experience – how it looks, cooks, smells, and tastes – in order to replicate it from plants. By isolating and extracting specific plant proteins, fats and nutrients, the team have been able to recreate the flavours, textures and aromas of beef. And just like a real burger, the Impossible Burger even bleeds.

Replacing one quarter-pound beef patty with an Impossible Burger saves as much water as a 10-minute shower, takes 18 driving miles of greenhouse gas emissions off the road, and frees up 75 sq ft of farmland.

The only catch is that, for now, you’d have to travel to the US to eat one, which would kind of ruin all of those environmental benefits.

After its initial rollout, though, the company behind the project – Impossible Foods – has received significant funding from the likes of Google and Bill Gates, and is in the lab trying to create really good replicas of our pork, chicken and fish favourites.

More reasons for us, hopefully, to ditch the real thing.

Impossible foods veggie burger ()

 

Our man (and resident vegetarian) James Charlton tracked down the burger to get a taste of his meatier past:

As a Vegetarian since September 2014, I can still remember the taste, aroma and texture of a delicious beef burger. As soon as I found out the Impossible Burger existed, I wanted it in me. But it's only available in 11 restaurants and they're all in America – four in New York. This was lucky, because I'd just bought cheap flights to NYC on Norwegian Airlines. 

I stayed with some friends and offered to take them for dinner at Saxon & Parole in Manhattan. Not just delicious dinner though: a dinner I'd been waiting for for two years, made by scientists, and my only available route back to burgerville. 

It came with mushroom purée, roasted oyster mushrooms, sherry onions, truffle cream and cost $18. It is genuinely fantastic. Slobber-inducing, sufficiently meaty, beautifully textured. 

The real thing. 

Melts in your mouth and melts your heart. 

Even the carnivores got stuck in. 

We need to get this election done so The Queen can reform parliament, so we can petition the Government to Bring The Impossible Burger To The UK Right Now!!

 

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