Tag Archives: food

Foodie Trends / Trendy Foods #weekendcooking

We’re in the final third of the year; did you follow any 2017 food trends? I had saved a December 2016 newspaper article predicting food trends for the new year, which hung around as clutter that I intended to do a 2017 Weekend Cooking post about…right up until this weekend when I actually looked for it! (I either need a filing system or should stop clipping from the printed paper and save everything online.)

Let this online article suffice: Jackfruit and Harissa? A Peek at Food Trends in 2017.

(I did not buy a single jackfruit so far this year, but I DID buy harissa. Haven’t used it, but I have it!)

As for past trendsetters such as deviled eggs and veggie chips, you’ll find them over there behind the box of Cronuts and plate of fairy bread. No, to the left of the avocado toast and stack of maple syrup-glazed bacon, next to the egg-white omelet. You need to move the ramen burgers, the ube and the chlorophyll extract to find them.

We gazed into a few crystal balls unveiled by some expert observers, as an indicative sampler. Continuing their runs from this year will be coconut everything, Asian noodles, gourmet mac ‘n’ cheese, flavored spirits, “authentic” Mexican cuisine, charcuterie, mocktails, oatmeal with unusual toppings, more farmers markets, grilled veggies, preserved anything, craft beers and cocktails, more flavors of granola, more uses of ancient grains, and creative ways to use fresh turmeric root in cooking, given the excitement over its purported health-inducing powers.

Farmers markets definitely seemed still trendy in 2017, with every town in my area offering at least one a week during the summer and into early fall. Craft beers and cocktails are another definite yes. We visited a couple of breweries in 2017, and like to try local draft beers.

At a brewery in Sturbridge, Mass. with photo-shy family.

Mocktails, not so much. Although I have seen a lot of recipes for them, actually, and they always sound good, if I’m going to splurge on something high-caloric and sweet it should either have alcohol in it or be a really good homemade cookie.

But would flavored waters and seltzers with lime count for mocktails? I did drink those occasionally in 2017.

Good call on the “‘authentic’ Mexican cuisine”! In 2017, we did go at least once to Jalapenos Grill, a restaurant where the menu points out which dishes are more authentically Mexican, as opposed to Tex-Mex.

Turmeric still seems trendy. My mom (a devoted frequenter of Farmers Markets, as well) has turmeric root in her kitchen. (I think she shreds it to add to salad.) Turmeric has been on my mind, especially because I caught several spring and summer colds, but I still haven’t made anything that’s predominantly turmeric-flavored, such as this hot drink:


Keep in mind, 2017 isn’t over yet! There’s still time to use up your turmeric root if you have some.

Who doesn’t love the term “ancient grains”? Can you get more authentic than something that was eaten, as is, millennia ago? Although ancient grains have to be gluten-free for us to have them in the house, I did eat a delicious, if a little under-seasoned, farro salad at a buffet luncheon this fall. (Quinoa, millet, and black rice, I’ll still love you in 2018 even if you’re not trendy anymore.)

Coconut seems trendy still; I feel sorry for people who don’t like it, because it’s everywhere. I had coconut ice cream at least twice in 2017. Maybe 2018 will usher out coconut and jackfruit will come into its own. I believe cauliflower took over from kale as the trendiest vegetable of 2017. Here is a cauliflower, coconut, and harissa recipe to try before the year is over:

Vadouvan-Roasted Cauliflower With Harissa Chickpea Curry

As this Forbes article – How to Use the Food Trends of 2017 in Your Kitchen – points out, sometimes trend predictions can be self-fulfilling prophecies (When people see something mentioned multiple times as a trend, they may try it for that reason.) but from a business perspective, you want to tell the difference between a fleeting fad and a longer-lasting trend if you’re going to base a business on it.

Although the Forbes article predicted that street food would still be trendy in 2017, my advice would be: don’t start up a coconut-, granola-, or turmeric-based food truck at this point.

What food trends have you been following or ignoring this year?

Happy Weekend Cooking!

Weekend Cooking badgeLinked to Weekend Cooking, a weekly feature on Beth Fish Reads. Click/tap image for Weekend Cooking posts from other bloggers.

Cute Cozy Culinary: Pies & Peril by Janel Gradowski #weekendcooking

cover image of Pies and PerilPies & Peril by Janel Gradowski – the first in the Culinary Competition cozy mystery series, set in Michigan – is a fun read for foodie mystery fans. Readers with a sweet tooth will drool over the descriptions of the prize-winning baked goods made by the main character Amy, such as Bumble Apple Crumble Pie, Lemon Cheesecake Muffins, and Hot Fudge and Pound Cake Trifle.

As in all cozy mysteries, the person found dead at the beginning of the story was someone who wasn’t much liked and won’t be missed much by anyone, but friendly, generous Amy, the perennial baking contest winner in town – at first a suspect, herself – quickly finds herself in danger of becoming the murderer’s next victim.

Here’s a short paragraph from the early part of the story, where Amy’s friend Carla is trying Amy’s latest “chocolate therapy” – a fresh-out-of-the-oven batch of Quadruple Chocolate Muffins – the morning after Amy discovered the dead body of her main competitor in the annual baking contest:

“Carla peeled the paper wrapper off a muffin and took a bite. Heavenly was too weak a word to describe the taste. Tender, intensely chocolate cake studded with pockets of gooey, melted chocolate. If there was a more decadent thing to eat for breakfast, she couldn’t think of one at the moment. Poor Amy was exhausted and stressed out, but she still turned out muffins that were ten times better than anything Maxson’s Bakery ever served.”

The recipes in the back of Pies & Peril are not on my diet, so I haven’t tried them, but they sound delicious!

Fruit & Nut Brownies
Savory Parmesan & Salami Muffins
Tomato Pies for Two
Spicy Maple Dipping Sauce

The Culinary Competition Mysteries series titles in order so far are:

  1. Pies & Peril
  2. Chicken Soup & Homicide
  3. Christmas Canapés & Sabotage
  4. Doughnuts & Deadly Schemes
  5. Fudge Brownies & Murder
  6. Banana Muffins & Mayhem (June 14, 2016)

Pies & Peril
Gradowski, Janel
Gemma Halliday, 2014

Disclosure: I won a free SmashWords download from the author in a Novel Meals giveaway in July 2014. I don’t read many cozy mysteries, but I like culinary ones the best, so I’m glad I finally got around to reading Pies & Peril!

Other opinions on Pies & Peril:
Joy’s Book Blog

Happy Weekend Cooking!

Weekend Cooking badgeLinked to Weekend Cooking, a weekly feature on Beth Fish Reads. Click/tap image for Weekend Cooking posts from other bloggers.

The Duke’s Hot Chocolate from The Splendid Table #weekendcooking @BethFishReads

photo of tree covered in snow

Because our weather yesterday afternoon was perfect for drinking hot chocolate, I indulged in an adult version of the favorite childhood treat – a decadently rich, dark version of hot chocolate, with allspice, orange peel, vanilla, and a hint of black pepper.


I’m not sure if I left out a half-cup of liquid, but it came out a little too thick – like drinking molten chocolate – so I thinned it with some boiling water. Later on, in the evening, I indulged in a second mug – this time with the optional shot of spiced rum suggested in the recipe’s variations.

The recipe for The Duke’s Hot Chocolate is available online here, and comes from The Splendid Table, a weekly podcast by Lynne Rossetto Kasper. Lynne knows everything about cooking, but her specialty is Italian food, and the duke for whom this hot chocolate was created in 1632 was Bolognese. The duke apparently knew a good thing when he tasted it.

In addition to her fun and informative Splendid Table podcast and Web site, you can cook with Lynne’s guidance every step of the way with her three print cookbooks and four e-cookbooks.

These are the ones I own. Click on the images for more info:

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The Splendid Table’s How to Eat Weekends

E-Books, $3.99 each:

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Eating In, Issue 1
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Eating In, Issue 2
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Italian Holidays: Eating In, Issue 3

And because I know some of you are going to be more curious about my pretty, tasseled bookmark than about the hot chocolate…


Happy Weekend Cooking!

Weekend Cooking badgeLinked to Weekend Cooking, a weekly feature on Beth Fish Reads. Click/tap image for Weekend Cooking posts from other bloggers.