Reflecting on progress made is as important as implementing the strategies necessary to achieve these objectives. January is generally the month in which most resolutions are put optimistically into place. Similarly, yearly trends have become the new buzzword, spanning sectors from technology to fashion, not forgetting the world’s preoccupation with food. As we’ve just edged over the mid-year mark, I thought it would be worth checking up on the ‘hot-to-watch’ predictions, as listed by food forecasters and those in the know.
Admittedly, there were some interesting ideas and others, just downright bizarre. The good ones tend to stick, while the ‘flaky’ kind slide virtually unnoticed back to the quiet and slightly disturbed place from which they came. Reading through the list of what to expect for 2015, there were a couple of trends that instantly resonated with me, a reassuring reminder that they’re more than just passing fads, but a return to the familiar, an honest way of eating. Most of these so-called new trends are seasoned with a respectful attitude towards the original source and managing food in a more authentic and unadulterated manner.
Spotlight on current trends
Artisanal everything is still in and hopefully will root itself as a mainstay and not merely a passing trend. Perhaps love, care and passion are the definitive components to improved taste? Seasonal trumps all-year-round availability, a concept the Italians have long since understood and practiced.
Having a quick glance through the extensive list, there are notable trends that show continued growth with no foreseeable signs of abating. Grass-fed beef, gourmet-style burgers, fermentation, flavoured salts, dark roasted coffees, deeper chocolates and yes, cauliflower is still in there. Loftier than kale itself, cauliflower is the iconic vegetable that can be morphed into gluten-free pizzas, cauliflower-rice, cauli-mash and barbecued steaks!
I predict that most of these trends will not be as fleeting as the year itself but rather, sought after basics. Consumers continue to look for produce that is both supportive of improved personal health, while simultaneously being mindful of the environment. It appears that in our quest to advance and forge new trends, we’re returning to a slower and more authentic way of feeding our bodies.
Say hello to the homemade gourmet burger
Taking my cue from the above, I’m going to combine several of the above trends to rustle up one stupendously good Gourmet Burger. On the menu we have The Ultimate stacked Beef Burger. Made from 100% pure beef (grass-fed), mushroom steaks, mature Cheddar, crisp lettuce, salty smoked bacon, cherry tomatoes and a homemade spicy tomato sauce. Served with a side of chunky paprika spiced potato wedges with smoked Kalahari salt (flavoured salts) and this burger game is on!
Note: As it’s all about the meat, these beef patties are pure ground beef, no added fillers or starches. To keep the patty tender, try to work with ‘light’ hands, without pressing too firmly when shaping. The Dijon mustard and Worcestershire sauce flavours the patty from the inside and adds a sensational umami taste to the meat.
The homemade spicy tomato sauce is totally worth it! Find the full recipe here.