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A Canadian import, Poutine is, in its purest form, chips, gravy and cheese curds – serious comfort food.However, we’re starting to see the bar raised with exciting extra toppings such as pulled pork, kimchi or coq au vin.
2.The new burger:
First, we had tiny sliders, then posh burgers. Now we’re putting an entire meal in a brioche bun! Posh burgers are still firmly on trend, but this latest reinvention goes beyond the beef and puts ingredients such as duck, lobster, pork belly, scallops and squid centre stage.
3.Brinner (breakfast for dinner):
There simply aren’t enough Saturdays and Sundays to try all those wonderful breakfast and brunch recipes, so they’re making their merry way to our weeknight dinner tables. We predict full English breakfasts, frittatas, or frankly anything with bacon or a poached egg on top will be firm midweek favourites this year.
4. Lithunian Food:
Lithuania will be in the news over the new year as it adopts the Euro, so we expect we’ll be hearing more about this Baltic state’s cuisine too. One traditional dish is Cepelinai, which means zeppelin, so-called because of the shape. It’s hearty, delicious and makes a little meat go a very long way.
Waffles with everything is the order of the day – both sweet and savoury. We think it might be down to Dan Doherty – the head chef at London’s Duck & Waffle restaurant – whose book hit the shelves last year. Here, we’ve gone sweet, slathering waffles in salted caramel sauce – another trend we think will continue to be popular for a good while yet.
6.Lard makes a comeback:
Lard – pig fat – fell out of favour after the Second World War and has struggled to get back in our kitchens ever since. Now, however, chefs are raving about the unrivalled crispness it gives to fried or roasted ingredients, its high burning point and the short, flaky texture it adds to bakes. The obvious way to celebrate lard is with a Lardy cake. Traditionally made with or without currants, depending on where you live, our modern version has added richness and sweetness from eggs, milk and a mixture of colourful and delicious dried fruit.
These flavourful bases for cocktails or non-alcoholic drinks are becoming increasingly popular in bars and restaurants. Similar to cordials, they are usually made from vinegar, fruit and sugar. A drinking vinegar, such as apple cider vinegar, is used to preserve fresh fruit juice and add sharpness, then sugar is added to improve the flavour. Alternatively, the fruit is preserved in sugar, and vinegar is added to cut through the sweetness.
Whole restaurants just serving puddings – as if the trends this year weren’t calorific enough. Still, we’re thrilled at the idea of more dessert choice!
9.South African specialties:
Biltong popped up in our trendsetter report back in 2014, and since then other South African specialities have been on our radar. These include bobotie – a baked dish usually made with minced beef or lamb, spices, dried fruit, bread soaked in milk, and a rich milk & egg sauce topping. Also, try Bunny chow – a hollowed-out loaf filled with curry – and Melktert, like a custard tart but with a higher milk content.
At the end of 2014, a number of high-end fast food restaurants opened in London, all specialising in the same main ingredient – lobster! But it’s not just confined to London – this New England-inspired trend has proved popular in Norwich, Cardiff and Manchester too.