Funding Leads to 'Unshelfish' Taste Treats
It’s not often we get invited to a food tasting prepared by a professional chef as part of our job at the Biotechnology Center, but that’s what happened recently for staff from the Science and Business technology groups.
We were invited to North Carolina State University’s Food Science Department to sample dishes made with crab meat prepared through a new process.
Started with the help of a $30,000 NCBiotech Company Inception Loan in 2009, Shure Foods is developing a technology to mechanically extract raw crab meat and restructure it into a product that can be used in many types of recipes.
Not only is the yield increased, but the use of raw crab, instead of cooked meat, allows for more flavorful dishes. The flavor and juices of the raw crabmeat can percolate through the other ingredients adding much more flavor than precooked meat.
NCBiotech also helped Sure Foods President Gabe Dough advance the technology with $3,000 in funding to support for a summer intern.
Now a $100,000 Collaborative Funding Grant (CFG) from NCBiotech to NCSU has brought Shure Foods together with Tyre Lanier, Ph.D., professor of food science at the university.
Dr. Lanier is an expert in the effects of heat and freezing on fish proteins and processing for high quality seafood products. The CFG project will tap into Lanier’s expertise and develop data needed to produce raw crabmeat products of consistent quality despite variability in properties of incoming crabmeat. The project holds promise to revive the NC crab fishery industry by lowering process costs and improving yields.
The tasting began with a breakfast quiche with crab and bacon, and a “tequila” crab dip, which I found to be very tasty. Other treats included fried crab sliders, a favorite of my colleague, Joe Nixon, and a balsamic reduction over crabmeat on a tomato base (also yummy!)
Unfortunately we had to get back to the office so we missed out on the next item on the menu - the crab chowder.