Michelin-starred British chef Heston Blumenthal is known for the mad scientist-style gastronomic cuisine he serves at his restaurant, The Fat Duck. So you might be confused when you hear that his latest innovation is a simple bacon sandwich. No, he hasn’t turned fast casual; that bacon sandwich went to space.
England’s Channel 4 tapped Blumenthal to build a bacon sandwich to send to astronaut Tim Peake in the International Space Station. It had to be crumb-free, moist but not too moist, nutritional, delicious and approved by three different groups: the UK Space Agency, the European Space Agency and NASA. Plus, the whole sandwich had to fit into a can and be able to withstand baking for two hours at 140 degrees (in order to kill of germs).
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To ensure his space sandwich would succeed, Blumenthal set up a team of chefs at a canning factory to experiment with different breads, butters and bacons. Eventually, he came up with his masterpiece: dense brown bread slathered with lard-like butter and topped with thick-cut bacon. According to a reporter from The Guardian who got to try one of the prototypes, the sandwich was about the size of a coffee cup lid and “heavy work on the jaw…but honestly pretty good.”