Three years ago, Space 10, the research and innovation lab led by IKEA, has introduced to the world to Tomorrow’s Meatball — a visual rethinking of IKEA’s iconic meatball using alternative ingredients such as insects, algae, and lab-grown meat.
Since then Space 10 have been developing a wider selection of dishes that showcase the kind of food we could one day be eating.
At Space 10, research is rooted in an important principle. Dishes shouldn’t just be healthy or sustainable. They must be delicious, too.
“To change people’s minds about food, to inspire them to try new ingredients, we can’t just appeal to the intellect – we have to titillate their taste buds,” they explained. “Which is why we’ve been working with our chef-in-residence to come up with dishes that look good, taste good, and are good for people and planet. It’s time, then, to put some of those dishes on the menu, starting with a playful take on our favorite fast food.”
Space 10’s twist on the classic snack shows that healthy and sustainable food need not be bland. It’s made with dried and glazed baby carrots, beet and berry ketchup, mustard and turmeric cream, roasted onions, cucumber salad, and a herb salad mix.
But the star of the show — and what gives the Dogless Hotdog its eye-catching looks — is the bun itself. That’s because it’s made with spirulina — the micro-algae that contains more beta-carotene than carrots, more chlorophyll than wheatgrass, and 50 times more iron than spinach.
“Oh, and more protein than a ‘real’ hotdog,” explains Space 10. “The UN called spirulina “the most ideal food for mankind” — and we’re inclined to agree.”
To show that insects can taste good, Space 10 took one of “tomorrow’s meatballs” — the Crispy Bug Ball — and cranked up the volume. Each Bug Burger contains 100g of beetroot, 50g of parsnip, 50g of potatoes, and 50g of mealworms — the larval form of a darkling beetle. (Feeling bugged out? Then you probably don’t want to know what’s really in your beef burger, chicken nugget or pork sausage…)
The Bug Burger comes on a delicious white-flour bun, topped with relish, beetroot and blackcurrant ketchup, chive spread, hydroponic salad mix. One bite, and we believe you’ll be crawling back for more.
Space 10 latest take on the IKEA meatball, the Neatball is designed to get people thinking about reducing their meat consumption, using local produce and trying alternative proteins. They’ve developed two kinds of Neatball — one made with mealworms, the other with root vegetables such as carrots, parsnips and beets. And for a true Swedish experience, they like to serve them with mashed potatoes, gravy, and lingonberry sauce.
The salad, called Lokal Salad, is made from microgreens – tiny sprout-like crops with a short shelf life, which Space 10 has been researching for a while now, and has showcased at various design events. These microgreens are typically used to garnish food, but Space10 discovered that the root, seed and shoot of these tiny plants are packed full of nutrition, and they can easily be cultivated at home.
The Lokal salad comes in three varieties: pink-stem radish, pea sprouts and thyme; broccoli, red-veined sorrel and tarragon; and borage, red frill mustard and lemon balm. Each is served with croutons made from day-old bread and a dressing made from tarragon, lemon balm or basil.
The final addition to the menu is the selection of ice creams, all made from microgreens. Choices include coriander, fennel, basil and mint. There’s also an ice lolly option, made from herbs including coriander, woodruff, sorrel and Spanish chervil.