What will be hitting the food fashion plates for 2018? I thought it fitting at the beginning of the year to start off with what the experts are predicting. Every year, like fashion, food has its fads which inevitably affect the way we think and see our food. Whether it is determined by environmental awareness, different cultural food, or just unique ingredients in a recipe, we are all looking for cleaner, healthier and interesting changes that will excite our senses.
Veganism is on the rise with more chefs using tofu, tempeh and quinoa. A plant based diet is any diet that focuses on foods derived from plant sources. You can look forward to a variety of plant-based milks, meat and cheeses (such as barley, flax, hemp, pea, and quinoa) on the supermarket shelves this year.
Poke bowls traditionally from Hawaii, are essentially sushi in a bowl without all the serious presentation. They are customisable so anyone can make them at home. Sushi rice, avo, either tuna or salmon soaked in delicious ginger honey and soy, edamame beans and anything you feel the urge to add. Top this with some mayo and toasted sesame seeds for a fresh and filling meal.
Pickling, preserving and fermenting are all up on the top favourites for 2018. We all know that gut health is so important and last year saw a huge movement towards the probiotics like kimchi, miso and kefir, but experts are predicting the inclusion of prebiotics like onions, garlic and other alliums.
Although not that easy to eat, sushi donuts are the new Sushi. The sushi rice is made in silicone moulds, turned out and covered with your favourite sushi toppings. Serve on a square of seawood as a plate.
Last year was all about matcha. In 2018 the green fix will be Moringa, which is made from the leaves of the moringa tree, found in parts of Africa, India, Thailand, Malaysia and the Philippines. The leaves are full of antioxidants, much like turmeric which will improve your cholesterol levels and help manage blood sugar. The nutty flavour of Moringa will be found in fruit smoothies, lattes and breakfast bowls.
In many countries of the world there is going to be a bigger trend to use ingredients that have been locally foraged or sourced within walking distance.
There will be a lot more Middle Eastern flavours coming through this year. Flavourful spices like cardamom, tumeric and blends like za’atar and harrisa will be hot favourites as Persian, Israeli , Lebanese and Moroccan influences will rise to the top.
ROOT TO STEM
With food waste on the decline, you can practise the root-to-leaf principle by not discarding any of your vegetables. You can roast your root vegetables with the leaves on. Don’t discard the stems of broccoli, Chard, cauliflower and fennel. All these can be used to flavour sauces or in your favourite dishes.
Flowers are not only for the garden. Culinary experts believe that floral flavours will be used extensively this year. The top flavours being elderflower, orchid, and lavender to add to sweet treats like shortbread and milkshakes, with pink hibiscus teas and rose flavoured cakes being a firm favourite.
I hope you will enjoy all the exciting healthy new flavours which are going to be available to us this year.