10 Foodie Trends to Look Out for in 2018
With every new year comes a new food trend. Who remembers the Freakshake furor of just a couple of years ago?! What can we expect to be big this year, in this ever changing, ever fickle, world of food?
1. Clean Eating. This term has nothing to do with bad table manners! It’s all about honest to goodness wholesomeness, in everything you eat. That is, no foods which may contain additives, preservatives and unwanted other ingredients. Out go the takeaways and convenient ready made meals. In comes home cooking. The way to clean eating is to start cooking meals from scratch, using fresh quality local and seasonal ingredients, in your own kitchen. That way you will know what has gone into your food and you can be confident it’s all good.
Clean eating is also most often applied to using wholefood ingredients like pulses,sprouting beans and lots of fresh vegetables. Expect to see a lot more of these being used in everyday recipes. Asian and Middle Eastern dishes lend themselves to these ingredients, so you can pack health and flavour into your meals.
2. Veganism. The days when vegetarianism was considered ‘cranky’ are long gone. Veganism takes the vegetarian diet one step further. A trend towards using absolutely no animal products in food is on the rise. A vegan diet, often also called a plant-based diet, needs serious consideration if you are going to attempt it. You really do have to know what plant-based foods you must eat to compensate for the lack of protein animal products bring to the diet. Animal products means not just meat, but fish, butter, cheese, eggs, cream, milk and yogurt.
Even honey is not allowed in a vegan diet. Get lots of advice and read all the books first. As an everyday method of eating, a plant-based diet needs to be well engineered and balanced, otherwise you could find yourself with a nutritional problem. On the upside, many who have taken up this way of eating have reported an improvement in health and well being.
3. Pro-biotic foods. These are the foods which aid gut health. Fermentation has been big in the last couple of years, a trend set to keep going. Some small artisan producers are now doing well with traditional fermented foods like Kimchi and Sauerkraut. Fermentation encourages good bacteria which create a healthy gut. You’ll be seeing a lot more fermented foods entering mainstream shopping outlets in 2018.
4. Nut milks. Almond, Cashew and Hazelnut milks are on the rise, not just for those with a dairy intolerance, but for anyone to enjoy as a dairy alternative if the fancy takes them. Nut milks can be used for yogurt, smoothies and ice creams as well. Big news on cafe menus for 2018.
5. Raw foods. Anything you can eat raw, will be eaten raw in 2018! From seafood sushi to crunching on crudites, raw food is the new cooked food! Which is no bad thing. Our Mesolithic ancestors of several thousand years ago lived on raw foods they gathered in the wild. They were a pretty healthy bunch, by all accounts! It’s long been known that eating your fruit and vegetables raw means you can avail of all the nutrients and vitamins that cooking so often destroys.
You might not fancy chomping on raw fish, but you can start your raw food eating campaign with fresh home squeezed juices made from a mix of fruit and vegetables.
6. Culinary regionality. According to Forbes, regional foods are set to become really big in 2018. Pioneered by the world’s top chefs like Massimo Buttora, who uses local foods like Parmesan cheese, produced near his restaurant in Italy, speciality foods of an area are now considered to be the most precious of ingredients. What have we been telling everyone for the last twelve years?! Make friends with the regional specialities of your area of Ireland. From the Waterford Blaa to a dish of Dublin Coddle, eating your regional foods are set to make you a trendsetter in 2018!
7. Food tourism. Now more than ever, travellers are choosing to travel the world, just to taste the cuisine of other countries. Nibbling on crickets in Cambodia, and witchetty grubs in Australia are some of the top things to do when you’re in these countries, allegedly! Who wouldn’t resist the colourful and flavoursome regional specialities of India or Thailand, or the exact execution of a plate of sushi in Japan? Here in Ireland, food tourism has been at the heart and soul of Good Food Ireland members since its conception.
People are coming here to taste our grass fed beef, superlative dairy produce, and fine artisan specialities made with Irish meats, fish, fruit and vegetables. Independent Craft distillers and brewers are creating a buzz again. Ireland’s cuisine is making its mark on the world stage. Ready now more than ever, to compete with our better known culinary cousins.
8. Food Experiences. Everyone seems to want a bite of the cherry, in food experience terms, pardon the pun. Making the enjoyment of food into a real ‘experience’ is set to grow in 2018. From farm tours to food trails, supper clubs and eating dinner in someone’s private home, culinary travel is now embracing exclusive opportunites to get behind the scenes of how real food is created and enjoyed.
Food Experiences are becoming popular choices for days out and longer breaks. Producer visits, food tastings and tours are all on the food trend agenda for 2018. Good Food leads the way in these experiences in Ireland. Check out our Experiences page for your foray into a food adventure this year.
9. ‘Free From’. These are words that have gathered pace in 2017, set to become even more familiar this year. ‘Free From’ foods are foods which contain no additives or preservatives, but also go further than that, to exclude dairy and gluten free specialities. Every supermarket now carries a ‘free from’ range, where you can spot the foods without the ingredients and additives you don’t want to consume.
10. Bowl Foods. They first made their mark in 2016, but bowl foods are growing in popularity. Every hipster cafe now has a bowl food menu. Marrying raw and lightly cooked veggies with tasty nuggets of meat or fish, colourful and with contrasting textures, so you get maximum enjoyment in a bowl. Bowl foods are all about the visuals. Adorn your morning porridge with beautifully arranged lines of fresh fruit, crunchy granola, seeds and toasted coconut flakes.
Throw together an Asian influenced supper of steamed rice topped with lightly cooked fresh fish on one half of your bowl and strippy stir fry vegetables on the other. Finish with sesame seeds and fresh herbs. Make a colourful salad of seasonal winter greens, topped with sliced avocado, tomatoes, cheese, chickpeas, sprouting beans and chopped nuts, for a nutrient packed lunch bowl to take to work. You’ll never need a plate again.