10 Food Trends For 2010

10 Food Trends For 2010
ESSENCE.COM Feb, 01, 2010

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The 35th annual Winter Fancy Food Show just wrapped up in San Francisco, which means the food and restaurant industry is abuzz with new food trends. But the Fancy Food show is not the only place foodies gather to hear about the year’s trends. There’s also a slew of food magazines and industry experts who make the call for what will be sizzling in our kitchens and restaurants for the year. ESSENCE.com rounded up some tasty predictions for 2010, like lamb, which Eatmedaily.com declares is “the new pork.” “Lamb neck is the new bacon,” they add.

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Perhaps the era of dark chocolate is behind us. Though it is technically an ad agency, predictions from J. Walter Thompson have become an industry norm. This year JWT says organic chocolate will be hitting shelves and palates in a major way. Whether you’re on a health kick, everybody’s got a sweet tooth and organic chocolate will help ease the craving in a guilt-free way. The benefits? It’s not quite as sweet as traditional chocolate and it’s good for you. New York City hot spot (in the winter, at least) Organicoa’s high-end organic chocolate has it’s own dedicated following.

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A lot of people have been suffering with gluten allergies—called Celiac disease—in silence. These days the roar of the gluten-free movement is loud enough for food manufactures and restaurants to take note and start creating delicious alternatives, like rice noodles. Restaurants and Institutions says more and more menus are beginning to cater to the three million Americans who suffer from the disease. Atlanta’s ZPizza has started serving a gluten-free crust with tasty toppings like “apple pie pizza” and shitake mushrooms.

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The Fancy Food show was abuzz with savory macarons, which are supposedly all the rage in France right now. Traditionally sweet (they’re made of egg-whites ans sugar), this year’s macarons were filled with savory ingredients like sun-dried tomatoes and Porcini mushrooms. New York Magazine recently declared the dainty delights “the new cupcake.” Adding to it’s rising profile, New Hampshire-based patisserie (and online shop) L.A. Burdick recently started serving the tiny French treats.

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Southern fried charm is hot this year. Epicurious.com declares that fried chicken will take the place of last year’s burger craze. Superstar chef David Chang of Momofuku Noodle Bar serves two types of fried chicken at his restaurant—one Southern style, the other triple-fried Korean style served with pancakes, lettuce and four types of sauce.

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Restaurants and Institutions predicts that eggs will be in everything this year. “Eggs are everywhere on menus—draped over burgers and pizzas, tucked into sandwiches, and showcased in dolled-up renditions of classic deviled and Scotch eggs as bar snacks and appetizers.”

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We’re talking bacon-flavored doughnuts, coffee and sweets. Of course the bacon trend has been around for years, but JWT predicts it will be even hotter in 2010. And with the recent debut of bacon-flavored vodka and ice-cream, they might just be on to something. Trendy chocolatier Vosges Haute Chocolate makes a decadent treat called “Mo’s Milk Chocolate Bacon Bar.”

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There were all sorts of citrus drinks and even cooking sauces at the Fancy Food Show, causing industry insiders to predict that exotic citrus might just be what’s on everyone’s palate come this summer. Think kumquat and blood oranges and lemons. If you’re looking to get in on the trend Trader Joe’s has a tasty all-natural blood orange soda for less than $3.

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The National Restaurant Association’s list of the Top 20 Food Trends for 2010 includes “bite-size” desserts for one. Perhaps we’re trying to slim down or looking for more flavor in smaller packages. Whatever the case this trend is here to stay, for the year, at least.

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A meatball shop recently opened in New York City, and Bon Apetit Magazine predicts that they’ll be on every restaurant menu this year. Who doesn’t love meatballs? They’re easy to make and they’re super affordable. “Iron Chef” participant and superstar chef Tim Love declared, via Twitter, that he will be adding meatballs—“the hottest food in 2010”—to the menu at his Lonesome Dove Western Bistro in Fort Worth, Texas.

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History shows that during an economic downturn, people turn to the foods that give them comfort. In this case it might be hamburgers, pot pies, Oreo cookies or even chillies. Industry insiders who attended the Fancy Food Show predict this will be a major trend in 2010.

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