Impossible Pork Ban Mi - © 2020 Impossible Foods

Impossible Foods Rolls Out Veggie Pork Substitute

Impossible Foods, makers of the well-known Impossible Burger, have announced the rollout of a new Impossible Pork Line, opening up a new world of possibilities for breakfast menu items. It’s the latest move by Impossible to catch up with (currently) undisputed leader, Beyond Beef…

BK Impossible Pork Sammy - © 2020 Burger KingComing almost immediately to participating BK locations…

Here come the Impossible Sausage Patties, Scrambles and other breakfast delicacies – all made with Vegetable Proteins. The world’s second-most popular fake Meat company débuted its new Sausage product at the Consumer Electronics Show in  Las Vegas on Monday. Sounds like they may have misunderstood the purpose of the annual gadget expo, but maybe not. After all, Impossible is a Silicon Valley company, and their products are based on a lot of high tech research and development. I’m sure they felt right at home among the device vendors. Nevertheless…

Veggie Pork formula is actually quite simple

Impossible Pork Sausage is made, like the Impossible Beef products, from Soy Protein ad some other ingredients designed to make the product’s appearance and texture similar to real Meat. The secret ingredient is Heme, a Protein Impossible extracts from Soy roots, which helps its products mimic the colour and flavour of real meat. Rather than extracting the stuff directly from tons and tons of Soy roots. Impossible has inserted the Heme-making gene into a Yeast strain which it can grow in huge qualtities, relatively easily. The Heme Yeast is then fermented and mixed with Coconut Oil and and other ingredients including Spices to tweak the flavour in the direction of real Sausage. Other slight modifications were made to the original fake Beef process to give the Sausage product the right bite and texture.

Where can you get it?

Impossible says it will roll out the Sausage product first in restaurants. But that doesn’t necessarily mean it will be hard to find. Impossible (Beef) Burgers are already on the menu at more than 17,000 restaurants in the U.S. and Asia, and Burger King has announced it will offer a new Impossible Pork Sausage and Egg Breakfast Sandwich almost immediately. The company is awaiting the go-ahead from European authorities to sell its Sausage products there. Impossible went on the market to restaurants with its initial Beef products a few years ago, but only went retail at supermarkets last year. The problem was scaling up production to meet the anticipated demand. While the company isn’t saying when Impossible Pork will be available at retail, one expects that the wait won’t be nearly as long.

How does it stand up to real Sausage?

Those who’ve tried at (at CES) say its no9t bad. Pretty good, actually. Elizabeth Lopatto of The Verge says, “I’m still chewing on how I feel, but it may not actually matter how perfectly Impossible Pork imitates the pig meat: it does provide a savory base of protein for a lot of foods that traditionally call for pork.

“During Impossible Foods’ event, I tried out some Impossible Pork Banh Mi (see photo, top of page), Impossible Pork Char Siu Buns, Impossible Pork Dan Dan Noodles, Impossible Pork Katsu, and Impossible Pork Sweet, Sour and Numbing Meatballs.

“It was… fine? The fake meat was a little spongy; my favorites were the meatballs and the noodles. Look, I should be straight with you: I haven’t eaten pork in more than 20 years, so I don’t know if it actually tastes like pork. I had to tap in a meat-eater, our pal Becca Farsace, who said the texture was not quite right, but the taste was basically accurate. One thing both Becca and I noticed: we weren’t sure whether it was Impossible Pork or just the way it was prepared, but the food was salty. Both of us chugged water after our taste test.”

My take

Impossible Pork will be to Pork what Impossible Beef is to Burgers and other Ground Beef dishes. As Lopatto says, it may not matter how accurately it mimics real Pig. But she’s a dedicated Vegan and admits she can’t remember what real Pork tastes like. In the end, Impossible Pork’s success in real world applications will probably depend on how it’s prepared, and how it’s flavoured and seasoned.

~ Maggie J.