Of course at the start of the new year its like fashion, I want to know what food fads are coming… lots to read about in the press and social media and yesterday went to the Cotswold Fayre which is all about new food and drink products, so lots of tasting and testing!
What can you expect to see more of this year? I will try and give you a brief, (not always easy with food) summary.
Generally you will see the popularity of pickling vegetables (wow thats a mouthful!) growing. With recipes for pickling vegetables such as sauerkraut, kimchi – recipe to try here, and kombucha, and experimenting with making your own yogurt, paneer and tofu.
I talked about the increase in interest in ‘make your own’, DIY kits at Christmas and this DIY trend is extending beyond the kitchen to balconies and gardens, where growing one’s own food is becoming more common. Schools are incorporating vegetable patches into their playgrounds and curriculum – the return to nature is appearing ever popular!
Insects are creeping and crawling (not from our gardens but from countries such as the Netherlands) onto the culinary stage. Several years ago it would have been rare to come into contact with edible insects, but now it seems that most people have at least one story about trying a cricket or mealworm. Over time, the idea (for some people still impossible to believe) will eventually be the norm! I chatted to Jimini’s at the fayre yesterday. I have sampled their products before and you know what, as a snack with a drink or appertif I would say they are ok, ‘crunchy yet satisfying’…full of Vitamins B1,B2 and B12 and Omegas 3 & 6 rich in protein, particularly the crickets! Jimini’s also have a range of almond and fruit bars made with cricket flour, perfect for gluten intolerances. The flavours I tried were Apricot, Goji and Chia, Dark Chocolate & Fig (my personal favourite) Banana & Dark Chocolate and Apple & Cinnamon.
One of the top 10 of new drink fads for 2017 are low alcohol or non alcohol drinks. I met Pick me Up! Drinks Nix and Kix. “For grown ups with no nasty additives”. They have kicked the refined sugars, artifical flavourings and preservatives out with the ‘Nix’ bit. There drinks are just simple blends of two juices, blended with spice and herb notes and their signature cayenne kick gives a surprising and refreshing twist, hence the ‘Kix’ bit. I tried all three flavours Mango Ginger, Cucumber Mint and Peach Vanilla.
www.nixandkix.com My favourite was the Mango Ginger really tasty and perfect for those evenings where you are driving or just want a refreshing but healthy flavoursome drink… and all we normally have is water!
Another idea which seemed so obvious but again a first for me was watermelon water. www.whatamelonwater.com have done just this with a lovely natural taste of summer “without the bits n pips”. It is pure watermelon water with a squeeze of lemon and has nothing else added. I found it really refreshing and something I could drink quite easily, simple yet again packed full of health benefits.
I walked round the food and drink fayre and tried lots of interesting products slab crisps, (a couple of those were quite a meaty snack), curry kits, honey, raw chocolate and gin (this seems to be everywhere!) but I really enjoyed the few new and different products that stood out… maybe 2017 will actually be year of the watermelon, bon appetit!