By Harriet Willis
Take a look at the upcoming food trends of 2018…
1. Tales of mocktails
Earlier this year, The Guardian published an article commenting that the non-alcoholic drinks market needs to grow. Mocktails are often fizzy drinks topped with a sprig of mint, or fruit juices with a dash of grenadine at best. We need something more exciting and more convincing. Seedlip have already brought out the world’s first non-alcoholic spirits, mimicking the punchy flavour of alcohol.
2. Moo-ve over meat
Now that more people are adjusting to a ‘flexitarian’ diet, the demand for more realistic meat substitutes is growing. The introduction of The Impossible Burger (a burger made purely from plants that allegedly tastes, looks and acts like meat) has finally allowed us to admit that Quorn really does taste nothing like meat. Consumers will also be looking to get their protein from more environmentally-conscious sources, such as plant proteins.
3. Floral flavours
Florals are no longer purely a fashion trend – now we eat them too. It has been predicted that 2018 will make your taste buds crave floral flavours, including lavender, elderflower and rose. In fact, Italian cuisine has already adopted this trend, with dishes such as deep-fried battered false acacia and elderflower.
4. Watching your food footprint
From packaging-less products to recycling machines that reward customers that recycle materials such as paper, 2018 will be all about ethical choices. An Italian brand, Negozio Leggero, has over ten stores that sell products without packaging. Mintel’s predicted consumer trends report states that 72% of the British population want to buy products that have been made from recycled plastic. Times are changing – we’re starting to cut down and care.
5. West African cuisine
The BBC have claimed that 2018’s biggest food trend is likely to come from West Africa. This cuisine is currently unexplored by the western world and will hopefully provide some new flavours for the upcoming year. The dishes originate from countries including Mali and Nigeria are fairly carbohydrate-based, with dishes such as Jollof rice and acheke.
6. The “croissushi”
You will have likely heard of the ‘cronut’ or the ‘cruffin’. 2018 will not stray from food hybrids and will give rise to a collaboration between a croissant and sushi. Originating in Los Angeles, the flaky French pastry will encase smoked salmon, nori, ginger and wasabi and can be dipped into soy sauce.
7. Dessert tacos
Who said that tacos had to be savoury? The beloved Mexican staple will soon be converted into a popular pudding, with restaurants starting to add this trend to their menus. This taco-transformation means that you’ll likely be eating berries and ice cream wrapped in a taco, drizzled with chocolate sauce.
8. Turn towards turmeric
Turmeric. The spice that we should always have stocked in our pantries. Providing numerous health benefits and a slightly bitter flavour, turmeric is set to be a big name in 2018. In September, Starbucks launched a tumeric latte, which consists of steamed coconut or almond milk mixed with turmeric, poured over a shot of coffee. The drink can be traced back to Indian roots.
9. Timut pepper
Forget your old friends salt and pepper, and make way for Timut pepper, a condiment originating from Nepal. BBC Good Food describes it as ‘surprisingly grapefruit-y’, indicating that this pepper could add fruity tones to our food.
10. Indian street food
Authentic Indian cuisine is rarely restricted to curry. Instead, popular dishes include street foods, such as pani puri (a hollow crisp filled with a flavoursome chutney) and dosa (think: Indian-style taco). Already served in multicultural hubs, such as Melton Road in Leicester, hopefully 2018 will see the introduction of Indian street food into a wider range of places.
Image: Emma Taylor