It is at this time of year when we start asking about trends in food for the coming months.
CULINARY CRYSTAL BALL
I see clearly that healthy and nutritious food is trending in 2013. This follows the latest innovations in the field; anywhere from mass consumption to boutique restaurants and organic brands. Even the mayors of big cities like New York are pushing towards conscious and healthy dietary habits!
SAVORY SURVEY RESULTS
Here are some statistics I’d like to share with you. This is a survey conducted by the Restaurant Association and included 1800 professional chefs—all members of the American Culinary Federation.
The survey reveals that the top five appetizers in 2013 will be:
1. House-Cured Meats /Charcuterie
2. Vegetarian Appetizers
3. Ethnic/Street-Inspired Food Appetizers (e.g., taquitos, tempura, kabobs, hummus)
4. Amuse-Bouche/Bite-Size Hors d’oeuvres
5. Flatbread Appetizers
Read Related: Healthy Snacks for In Between Mealtimes
Some Highlights From the Survey:
- Organic vegetables remain the stars.
- Farm to table concept will also remain key in 2013. Here the chef utilizes local and seasonal ingredients to showcase on their menus (i.e.: restaurant gardens).
- Healthier Menus. Chefs will continue to look for healthier and nutritious recipes; incorporating more grains and vegetables, cutting portion sizes, etc.
- Healthier kid’s meals. Including whole grain items, fruits and vegetables in menus for the little ones.
- Ethnic-inspirations and influences embedded in the American menu (Peruvian, Korean Thai, Vietnamese, Malaysian).
- The ultimate ancient ingredients. The list is growing fast and includes: artisan cheese, farm branded items, non-wheat flour (i.e.: rice flour), quinoa, exotic fruits, superfruits (i.e., açaí), ancient grains, and pickled vegetables.
- So, when you plan your next recipe or party menu, try to include healthy appetizers and veggie appetizers. Always remember to make bite-size appetizers and try looking for some ethnic-inspiration. And do not forget to use homemade ingredients!
- Today I have prepared a vegetarian appetizer that inspired me at the beginning of 2013. This dish is healthy, rich in flavor, and elegant for starting a dinner party. It is made of a variety of veggies that bring a beautiful look to your table.
I hope you enjoy it!
2 TBSP olive oil
3 clove garlic, chopped
½ white onion chopped
3.5 ounces leek chopped
1 bunch kale chopped
3 small cooked beets
1 cooked potato
2 to 3 TBSP Parmesan cheese
Salt and fresh ground black pepper (to taste)
¼ TSP nutmeg, freshly grated
- Preheat Oven to 350 F.
- Wash the kale and pinch off the leaves at the top of the stem. Discard the stems.
- Wash the leek and the onion.
- Chop leeks, the onion, the kale and the garlic cloves.
- Heat 2 TBSP of olive oil in a skillet. Add the chopped leek, onion, garlic and kale.
- Reduce heat to medium and cook until pieces are tender.
- Bring water to boil and cook the potato and beets separately.
- Blend in 3 separately bowls the cooked potatoes and the beets.
- Beat the egg.
- Add salt, pepper, nutmeg and Parmesan cheese into the three different bowls containing the potatoes, the beets, and kale mixtures.
- Stir and adjust seasoning to taste.
- Pour a little egg in the potatoes, beets, and in the kale mixtures.
- Brush the mold with olive oil.
- On the bottom of a mold add a layer of the kale mixture, followed by potatoes mixture. Add a final layer of beets mixture.
- Bake at 350 F in oven until it gets some consistency.
- Cool it down and unmold.