I mean seriously – what do you mean? I just started to like kale and now it’s is out like lights after midnight?!
Okay, that is not entirely true… according to the What’s Hot in 2014? survey by the National Restaurant Association, kale will share the limelight with its leafy green cousins, its yellow, red and orange best friends and its purple, white and every-colour-in-between partners in the produce aisle. In fact, there is plenty to love in the Top 20 Trends. Here are the highlights of what is going to grab (or continue to keep) our attention, tempt our palates and grace our plates this year.
1. Locally sourced meats and seafood
2. Locally grown produce
3. Environmental sustainability
4. Healthful kids’ meals
5. Gluten-free cuisine
6. Hyper-local sourcing (e.g. restaurant gardens)
7. Children’s nutrition
8. Non-wheat noodles/pasta (e.g. quinoa, rice, buckwheat)
9. Sustainable seafood
10. Farm/estate branded items
11. Nose-to-tail/root-to-stalk cooking (e.g. reduce food waste by using the entire animal/plant)
12. Whole grain items in kids’ meals
14. New cuts of meat (e.g. Denver steak, pork flat iron, tri-tip)
15. Ancient grains (e.g. kamut, spelt, amaranth)
16. Ethnic-inspired breakfast items (e.g. Asian-flavored syrups, Chorizo scrambled eggs, coconut milk pancakes)
17. Grazing (e.g. small-plate sharing/snacking instead of traditional meals)
18. Non-traditional fish (e.g. branzino, Arctic char, barramundi)
19. Fruit/vegetable children’s side items
20. Half-portions/smaller portions for a smaller price
So here’s what I think: yum! If these are the trends then I’m a happy eater. I can continue to eat local, eat fresh and try something new, branzino anyone? Oh, and best yet, I get to have my kale and eat it, too.