Thanks to the internet and the ever-changing whims of modern man’s tastebuds, we love a good food trend.
In 2015 we saw chia seeds, paleo, quinoa, monster milkshakes, bone broth and cronuts, so what can we expect this year?
Well it looks like 2016 is going to be the year of weird when it comes to food trends, with ambitious food lovers across the world pumping themselves up for some seriously odd foodie experiences.
If you want to know what to expect on your plate this year, keep reading!
You’re still having a cup of tea at the breakfast table or when you need a pick-me-up at the office?! Get with the times! Now people are drinking kombucha. It’s a fizzy, non-alcoholic tea, known as a ‘live tea’ because it has had ‘scoby culture’ added to the mix. This means it’s fermented, and therefore packed full of probiotics. It’s a good idea if you’ve got digestive issues, and can be flavoured with anything from rose petals to lemongrass and hibiscus!
It might sound like a moonshine for hillbillies, but nooch is actually a favourite among vegans already. It’s set to hit the big time in 2016 as a condiment. Nooch is a street name for a deactivated nutritional yeast. Apparently, it’s delightfully cheesy, nutty and buttery with an umami flavour. You can eat nooch on pasta, popcorn, mashed potato and even spread it on salads. It’s really good for you, filled with vitamins, minerals, protein and fibre.
Food with colour is almost always a big hit, and according to the experts that’s why ube is the next big thing in the food world. Ube is a delightfully sweet and unbelievably purple yam variety from the Philippines. If you boil it and mash it up you can turn it into just about anything from ice cream to cheesecake and even doughnuts. The taste resembles sweet potato or taro, and it’s been used locally since the early days. Cooks are loving it for it’s ability to add a bit of colour, as well as that creamy texture and natural sweetness, back into food.
There won’t be too many people who haven’t come across sriracha before, whether they were travelling in Thailand or simply eating at Asian food spots in Australia’s capital cities. The spicy chilli sauce is enough to blow anyone’s tastebuds out of the water, but it’s actually just the beginning. Our love for sriracha is expected to blow up even more this year, with other ethnic chilli flavours like India’s ghost pepper, North Africa’s sumac, harissa, dukka and more, all gaining popularity as well.
8. Acai Bowls
Porridge might be a good staple, but compare it to the health powerhouse of acai bowls and it’s no surprise the ‘ye ol’ favourite’ breakfast food has fallen out of fashion. The acai berry is a Brazilian super fruit, and an acai bowl is frozen acai berry pulp served in a bowl with other fruits and bits on top. So yeah, it’s basically it’s a frozen smoothie in a bowl but it’s super healthy, super delicious, and absolutely taking over the world this year.
No, this is not the fancy, foreign version of your favourite Facebook action from several years ago. It’s actually the newest player in the world of raw fish. Yep, sashimi is out, and ceviche is so last season. Poké is a Hawaiian delicacy that’s involves cubes of raw seafood, usually tuna or salmon, that’s been marinated in soy sauce and then topped with a variety of interesting ingredients before being eaten on a bed or rice or green vegetables. There are lots of variations on the newly popular dish, but with a full serving of vitamins, proteins and antioxidants, poké isn’t going anywhere.
Seaweed is far from an unfamiliar plant, having made an appearance several times in the world of ‘healthy living’ over the past few years. But this year seaweed is the new kale, which is saying something. You can expect it in all the usual places, hanging out with sushi or finding it’s way as flavouring on chips, but it’s also going mainstream. There is a larger market than ever for seaweed, even as in dried strips that can be eaten as is. Full of fibre, antioxidants, good fats and of course, a sense of environmental-friendliness, it’s no surprise this ocean plant is a big hit.
Gym-lovers have been knocking back shots of chlorophyll, and trying to tell anyone who’ll listen about just how good the goop is. Chlorophyll is the stuff that makes plants green, and if you listen to its lovers you’ll learn it’s supposed to be full of magnesium and have the ability to boost your metabolism, aid your digestion, deal with bad breath and even prevent cancer (that escalated quickly). Whatever it does or doesn’t do, it’s definitely coming into fashion, with more people starting to add it into food for a nutritional and colour boost.
You might sprinkle turmeric on your food every now and again, but you haven’t seen anything yet. 2016 is the year people fall head over heels into piles of turmeric, literally. Turmeric is packed with antioxidants, iron, manganese and has incredible anti-inflammatory properties, if you believe the hype. Some people even think it can stop the onset of dementia. You can expect it in curries and stews, as normal, but also making a debut in smoothies and sweets. It’s orange, packs a punch, and isn’t slowing down.
3. Savoury Ice Cream
Ice cream might have been a sweet dessert in the past, but 2016 is the year that one of the world’s most unchanging foods gets a makeover. Yep mint choice chip and rum ‘n’ raisin is out the door for ice cream while parmesan, peppercorn, soy sauce and even squid ink are in. Sound a little outside your comfort zone? For us as well, but with ice cream becoming the new health food, is Ben And Jerry’s still allowed?
It seems that people in 2016 are rocking out for fermented foods. Pickled vegetables, sourdough bread, yoghurt and, of course, Korean kimchi becoming big foods this year, koji is also on the menu. Koji is a naturally occurring fermentation culture that originated in Japan where it’s used to ferment rice and soya beans. Koji is what is involved in the process of making soy sauce, miso and sake, but you can expect to see it popping up more and more in 2016. Fermented food makes guts healthy, and that’s on everyone’s agenda.
Maybe Fear Factor, Survivor and I’m A Celebrity have been onto something all these years with their bug-eating challenges, because apparently insects are the new ‘big protein’ source. Not only that, but they’re also everywhere, and super easy to farm and harvest. You can have them crispy as snacks, or ground up in a bug protein flour that is finding it’s way into some fancy power bars. In any case, it seems that if people can get over their revulsion, they’re going to be the food on everyone’s lips.