3D printing delicious, living, edible snacks

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This is cute and brilliant Design Fiction, but I suspect 3D printing will be used to churn out horrible Consumer Grade snack foods made from insect protein.

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I already have stuff like that in my fridge, although created by accident, and probably not healthy nor delicious either.

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Wait, what? The center is a mass of agar jelly growth medium used to grow herbs and mushrooms that are part of the snack? It’ll also be growing mold and bacteria, too. Lots and lots of mold and bacteria, by the time some fungus or plants have sprouted. It’s a cute idea that’s completely divorced from the real world.

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I hate to be a cynic, but those mushrooms are clearly just placed, not grown…

Love the idea. Wish there was a time-lapse of it actually growing.

while you can culture mycelium on sterilized agar you will be hard pressed to get a mushroom from it.

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Right and the sort of medium that would be a friendly place for these things to grow isn’t likely to be delicious (edible mushrooms are grown on poop and trees for example). I’m not sure this person knows how food works. The shell itself is going to be rotting/going stale/breaking down as it sits waiting for things to sprout. It can take weeks for seeds to germinate. Mushrooms too. And it would require specific conditions in regards to humility, temperature, sun exposure. Conditions that are bit mutually exclusive between herbs and mushrooms (mushrooms like dark, herbs sun). So your “healthy and sustainable” 3d printed snack is going to have to be made out of a weird mix unpalatable fertilizers, flavor additives to cover that unpalatablility, stabilizers, preservatives, salt, and a likely impossible ability to eadibly keep the moisture the plants need separate from their edible container.

This is a “concept”. Basically just a proposal for a supposed “cool” idea, often without any mind paid to feasibility. Like those renders of implausible gadgets we often see from design students.

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Consider the humble mushroom, grown in a sterile agar and sugar platform, paired with basil and thyme, sprouted in only a few days. The young, tender shoots of green blending with the earthiness of the mushroom…

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Consider the humble Penicillium, grown in a less than sterile bed of sodden pastry stored in direct contact with a ■■■■■ agar agar loaf without refrigeration for just a few days. Its delicate bitterness, and slimy white fuzz blending with the faint fetidness of the now structurally defunct pastry, and the gritty chew of un-germinated thyme seeds.

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That pretty much sums it up, really.

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This is about as close as you’re going to get in the real world:

After about five times the period of time covered by the video, the herbs would start to sprout. Out of the remaining rotten, moldy mass, eventually some mushrooms might grow. Yum!

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SILENCE FOOL! Don’t you realize 3D printing is awesome? Now eat your agar.

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not really sure its safe to eat raw mushrooms of any kind- always best to cook mushrooms believe it or not.

not really sure you get more health from the sprout of a plant cause it has natural defenses to ward of animals from eating it. so the plant can grown. and have a chance to provide way more nutrition than could be possible in the tiny immature plant.

i listen to my gut reaction about foods, and my gut says NO to raw mushrooms and to uncooked sprouts.

Wow. Just wow. Where did your gut get this information? As far as I’m aware the only risks associated sprouts is the same risk of bacterial contamination as any other produce when eaten raw (last I heard the largest outbreaks of food board illness in the US have been from cantaloupe and spinach, both mature). There’s not a mysterious “natural defense” that all immature plants have to prevent animals from eating them (otherwise I wouldn’t have such a problem with Rabbits poaching my garden). Save plants that are generally poison at all maturity levels as a natural defense. As for mushrooms I’m not aware of anything other than the same contamination issues that are an issue with any food item. IIRC there are a few wild mushroom varieties that are at least mildly poisonous and can be rendered safe to eat with heavy cooking or processing. But cultivated mushroom varieties are just not poisonous, that’s why we cultivate them. Any toxic varieties they might be confused with (incredibly unlikely) are just not going to be suddenly rendered safe by cooking. I know certain beans are actively poisonous before being cooked, and casava needs to be processed before eating. But these are toxic plants, known to be dangerous to consume, that we’ve figured out how to render safe.

Frankly the only thing I’m aware of as a genuine risk here is contamination with your typical food borne illnesses. And any produce you might consume is going to have the same risks, some varieties much more so than sprouts or mushrooms. Oddly enough organic produce tends to have an increased risk. Due to the types of fertilizer used (poopies).

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3D printing is awesome, and I love me some agar jelly - just not after it’s sat around for 30+ days.
Basically, what I’m saying is, I’d much rather have the 3D printed bug protein than the real-world version of this fantasy dish, thankyouverymuch. Mmmmm, bug protein.

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Depends on the mushroom:

(I thought the Dutch had outlawed Psilocybe, though).

Funny, but that looks nothing like agar.

It’s agar covered with mycelial growth. To the best of my knowledge, this is P. mexicana from Roger Heim’s lab. Heim supplied the fungal material from which Albert Hofmann first isolated psilocybin. They actually patented the process of growing P. mexicana on agar and extracting the alkaloids.

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Apologies for the lazy self quote, but this remains relevant.

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Whats wrong with insect protein?


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