Israeli entrepreneurs develop a culinary Genie, that uses tiny pods to create gourmet meals in 30 seconds, similar to those that contain coffee for espresso machines. Sharon Reich reports.
It's a revolution in culinary technology. With the press of a button on your phone, The Genie becomes your personal chef … mixing, shaking and baking a healthy meal in just 30 seconds. Developed by Israeli entrepreneurs at White Innovation, the device uses tiny pods to create meals, similar to those that contain coffee for espresso machines. White Innovation CEO, Ayelet Carasso. (SOUNDBITE) (English) WHITE INNOVATION CEO, AYELET CARASSO, SAYING: "The dish can be anything, it can be a meal like chicken with rice, like couscous with vegetable or an amazing Ramen or even a chocolate soufflé or any other dessert that you want. And it's healthy because we're using only natural ingredients, we're not using any preservatives or anything that people add to their meals." The all-natural ingredients in the pods are freeze-dried and have a shelf-life of one - two years. Israeli chefs have already begun producing new recipes for Genie's pods and plan to add more for those with diets that are sugar free, low protein or gluten free. Doron Marco, White Innovation's head of technology, says the system was inspired by Star Trek's "replicator," a device that synthesized food on the legendary Starship Enterprise. While Genie is of this galaxy, the system is being refined so that in the future it will be able to anticipate an individual's dietary needs. (SOUNDBITE) (English) DORON MARCO, WHITE INNOVATION'S HEAD OF TECHNOLOGY, SAYING: "Eventually, Genie will know your microbiome and will prepare the pod for you, just for you and you will eat better, even tastier and healthier." At a recent taste test at a café in Israel's Ramat Hasharon, kitchen staff gave Genie's culinary skills two thumbs up after sampling a chocolate soufflé. (SOUNDBITE) (English) CHEF TAL SAYING: "It's really nice, it's chocolatey, it's smooth, it's creamy, it's nice ... surprising actually coming from there." Genie will be on sale to the masses next year and will cost a few hundred U.S. dollars. Developers say pods will be comparable to the price of a similar meal. It looks like Star Trek's replicator may not have been such a far-fetched idea after all.