Step aside kale and avocado, Food Futurologist (yes, it’s a thing!) Dr Morgaine Gaye shares her predictions for the new kids on the block.
Her day job involves looking into a crystal ball and forecasting food trends based on global movements in architecture, design, fashion, even what’s happening economically and ecologically!
We also have input from our Innovations Development Chef Mark Richmond, who travels the globe hunting down the latest trends to keep us ahead of the curve in terms of new products.
Great minds think alike, so here’s their top pick of what our palates will be experiencing this year...
Gone are the days of simple tap water. Now you can enjoy H2O in all its guises, from watermelon and birch, to artichoke and glacial.
Watch out, too, for water sommeliers guiding diners to choose the best bottle of water to match their meal, while we, as consumers, start to know our acidic waters from more salty-tasting varieties with a high mineral content.
Thanks to Instagram, we’ve seen every barista pattern on top of every cappuccino ever made, but are your skills up to scratch to create that perfect coffee at home? Coffee toppers are chocolate shapes embedded with various sweet or nutty treats that melt into your coffee.
Pop one on top of your latte and watch it blend into a delicious mocha.
Off the back of the Bulletproof Diet trend – a diet high in saturated fat, grass-fed cow butter like Kerrygold and all animal-based fats – there seems to be an overarching trend toward fats seeming less evil!
From truffled lard to duck-fat caramels, consumers are more inclined to start seeing fat as friend and carbs as foe. The trend is moving away from ‘skimmed’ and ‘light’ towards the unadulterated versions of real food.
Houmous is stepping up its game. Sweet varieties of salted caramel or chocolate-orange flavours will offer protein-rich, gluten-free dessert dips for biscuits or fruit. But that’s not the only new direction for the humble chickpea.
Crispy chickpeas, for snacking, will be coated in flavoured rice-flour shells which then crunch down into the soft chickpea centre. Keep an eye out for roasted, salted chickpeas, too – a great nut-free alternative to savoury nibbles.
These nut-free, non-nuts are actually tiny woody tubers suitable for anyone with a nut allergy and can be eaten raw from the bag. Tiger nuts are an acquired taste so, decades ago, the Spanish pressed the roots and created ‘horchata’, a tiger nut milk to which they added sugar.
Fast-forward to the present day and a few companies have taken on this concept, adding exciting new flavours to an already-delicious drink. It’s the newest milk of 2017. Cheers!
Street food trend
Hot, smoky flavours like you see in American BBQs cooked over wood will be big in 2017. Plus, umami from seaweed, kimchi and miso, and sour, bitter, tangy elements. If you love the sound of this already try recreating our smokey pork and whisky burgers.
As alcohol consumption declines in the under 30s, cool and sophisticated non-alcoholic drinks are on the rise, offering complex flavour profiles akin to good wines.
With intriguing ingredient combinations and beautiful packaging, they feel like a special treat, not just a chore for the designated driver! Perfect for flavouring jellies, cakes and puddings, too.
High Fibre products
You’ll see a lot of food and health bloggers talking about high-fibre products. Ancient grains such as quinoa, teff and chia are very popular for this reason.