It would appear that Japan is getting more and more firmly entrenched in the euglena craze. These little algae (particularly those from Ishigaki Island) have been determined to pack a nutritious punch carrying around 59 different kinds of nutrients from vitamins and minerals to amino acids.
We recently sampled these little guys in a cup of delicious yogurt, which was creepy at first but not a big leap since yogurt is all bacteria-y anyway. But would the public also go for these little microorganisms being added to a patty of grilled red meat? American diner chain Denny’s is wagering “yes” with their euglena hamburgs only available in Japan from the end of this month.
Before going any further it should be noted that this is a “hamburg” not a hamburger. In Japan that little suffix represents buns, toppings, and pretty much everything except the patty.
Not only that, this is a healthy hamburg which tries to balance your diet with all its new fixings. In addition to Japan’s miracle microbes, you get tofu, soybeans, hijiki, carrot, fish, shiitake mushroom, and yam. It’s called the Black Biken Burg Set ~ With Silver Glaze and can be bought from 1,240 yen (US$13) when it goes on sale on 29 October.
This is actually just one dish in a line that Denny’s is planning to roll out on the same day called the Biken Saizai menu. The other (euglena-free) dishes are:
Pancake & Salmon Burg ~ Eggs Benedict Style (940 yen [$9.60] w/ drink)
Three Vegetable Omelet & Fried Oysters (1,190 yen [$12])
Taste of Autumn Salmon Burg (1,240 yen [$13])
Salmon Burg & Bite-Sized Rib-Eye Steaks (1,140 yen [$12])
Biken Rice Bowl with Loco Moco Style Salmon Burg (890 yen [$9] w/ drink)
Personally, I’m more of a Moons Over My Hammy kind of guy but if I were to dine with a more health conscious partner it’s good to know Denny’s Japan has that covered – euglena and all.