A group of researchers in Oregon might have just changed the way we prepare our breakfast when they found a seaweed that tastes like bacon, but healthier. Normally, the words ‘bacon’ and ‘health’ do not go well in the same sentence due to the high content of fat and calories, yet the taste is undeniably worth it for most.
If only there was an option that would not result later in life in cholesterol problems or weight gain. It seems the solution to that might be on its way and it has been slowly inching toward us for the past fifteen years.
Chris Langdon has been cultivating the seawood known as dulse for abalones, but never considered it as a food for humans until approached a member of OSU. The picture began to form, the potential, the innovation and the marketing of selling a healthy food that tastes just like bacon. A very strong taste of bacon, if reports are believed.
Dulse might not sound too compelling for most of the population given that it’s a seaweed, but it can be described as translucent red lettuce. That might not sound too appetizing or unique either. However, the aspect might be as important as taste, or even more significantly, it’s nutritional value.
The seaweed has been described as being an exceptional source of vitamins, antioxidants and minerals, with even up to 16% protein content when dry. The latter percentage might be lowered when it hits the markets as its main condition to reach the boasted bacon-like taste is to fry it. However, proteins might not be the main attraction anyway.
Dulse grows wildly along the coasts of the Atlantic and Pacific Ocean, but Langdon has been growing it himself in tanks that provide between 20 and 30 pounds per week. With potentially new uses, and ones he seems to desire most dearly if judged by the patent issued, his plans are to expand growth to 100 pounds per week.
There are no companies or commercial operations that grow the seaweed for human consumption. However, there are some demands for dried dulse in health stores that sell it as a nutritional supplement or ingredient for $90 per pound.
However, before it’s set to hit the markets, researchers have been working on both finding a way to lower the steep price and developing new products that contain dulse. The most popular ones are reportedly rice crackers or promoting its use as a salad dressing, but they do not plan on stopping there.
It may require some clever marketing, as a majority of the population might be hesitant to try eating seaweed, but it’s quite expected for it to start selling itself if the benefits and taste are as promised. The BLT could perhaps come with the DLT option in menus. Dulse, lettuce and tomatoes, all the nutritional values without the fat. It sounds like tasty health wrapped up in bread.
Image source: gannett-cdn.com