Our weekly serving of off-the-menu items—a few popular favorites from the week as well as a few morsels that may have slipped your notice.

Now Listening
This hour-long episode from NPR’s TED Radio Hour covers a number of issues we’re concerned about here at MOLD including entomophagy (eating insects), psychology and edible landscapes.

FastCo Tearsdown June Oven
Finally, someone said it. The promise of the connected kitchen has been elusive, at best, and overdesigned at its worst. Oftentime, Silicon Valley entrepreneurs seem to be solving for problems that don’t exist. FastCo’s Mark Wilson has a delicious teardown of tech darling June Oven calling it “everything that’s wrong with Silicon Valley.”

Bacon Mushroom
A Tuscon-based mushroom farm is cultivating beautiful flamingo-pink “bacon mushrooms.” That’s right, organic oyster mushrooms that that have the flavor or your favorite porky treat.

The Calculus Behind a Perfect Cup of Coffee
Between bio-engineered beans to the dawning of “fourth wave” coffee—think caffeine via drone delivery—it seems like human ingenuity is really keen on perfecting a cup of coffee. The Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics has published a paper breaking down the grain size vs. what water can extract from them.

How the Biz of Meal Kits Effect Farmers
A look at the secrets of the supply chain for those farm-friendly meal delivery services that ship out over eight million meals a month. Interviewing farmers and the CEO of Blue Apron—other meal kit delivery services declined to respond—Modern Farmer breaks down the details of how the innerworkings of one of the fastest growing food tech sectors.

Redesigning the Paper Bag
It’s that season where chestnuts are roasting on an open fire…jack frost nipping at your nose. Two students at Henan University of Technology in China have redesigned the paper bag for nut lovers worldwide. An accordion folded section on the side of the bag becomes a pocket for disposing of those nasty shells. This seems like a great solution for fried chicken-lovers condiment-happy foods.

Massimo Bottura Battles Food Waste
One of the world’s best chefs, Massimo Bottura, launched Food for Soul last month, a non-profit dedicated to fighting food waste and global hunger. Watch his full presentation at the Food on The Edge conference here.