What diners will be eating in 2017

Cauliflower is touted as the new kale for 2017. — AFP pix
Cauliflower is touted as the new kale for 2017. — AFP pix

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NEW YORK, Dec 28 — Cauliflower is the new kale, and 2017 will see the renaissance of French cuisine in the US. 

Those are among some of the food trends predicted by the venerable James Beard Foundation (JFB), a non-profit culinary arts organisation in New York which keeps tabs on the country’s gastronomic zeitgeist through its network of chefs, journalists and critics.

Here’s a selection of some of the trends diners in the US can expect to see on their plates in 2017:

French cuisine 
Experts at the James Beard Foundation predict a stateside revival of “la grande cuisine,” notably in New York City where restaurants like Le Coucou, Mimi and Augustine have become some of the city’s hottest dining destinations. They also credit French celebrity chef Ludo Lefebvre for setting the movement in motion when he opened his wildly popular Petit Trois in Los Angeles a few years ago. “Ironically, the only place French food isn’t trending is France-but we’re eager to see where this latest wave of mother sauces takes us in 2017,” reads the blog post.

Cauliflower is the new kale
Over the last year, chefs and consumers alike have given cauliflower a second glance, turning the cruciferous veg into everything from cauliflower rice, cauliflower steaks, and whole-roasted main dishes. Expect to see its popularity continue in 2017.

Kalettes
What do you get when you cross kale with Brussel sprouts? Leafy green, mini cabbages called kalettes, which James Beard experts predict will gain traction in 2017 thanks to the fusion of these two popular brassicas. Producers of the hybrid vegetable describe the flavour as sweet and nutty. Kalettes can be sautéed, roasted, grilled or eaten raw. 

Frybread, experts say, is all set to take its place in the limelight next year.
Frybread, experts say, is all set to take its place in the limelight next year.

Frybread
It used to be a state fair treat inspired by Native American traditions and Eastern European cuisines, but frybread will begin popping up more often on restaurant menus in 2017, say experts at the JBF. While some will opt to remain faithful to the traditional recipe — flat dough thrown in the deep fryer — expect to see others garnish it with assorted toppings.

Technicolour desserts 
In 2017, expect cakes, pies and other assorted baked goods to become canvases for rainbow-coloured sprinkles and vehicles for kaleidoscopic confectionery. Need proof? Look no further than the most popular Pinterest boards and Instagram food photos.

Tataki 
It’s a bold claim, but experts at JBF predict tataki, thin slices of fish or meat seared quickly on the edges and brushed with vinegar, to “sweep the nation and land on every menu from coast to coast.” Move over crudo and carpaccio. There’s a new cold appetizer in town. — AFP-Relaxnews

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