Culinology -- December 2013 - (Page 6)

EMERGING TRENDS RGING Fitter food service fare coming into focus While "gravy-smothered" and "chicken-fried" describe some of the signature dishes on Cracker Barrel's menu, the casualdining chain took a different turn in August with its first major launch in a decade. Czizek, vice-president of menu development and innovation. In creating lower-calorie dishes, Applebee's has learned that size matters - both in flavor and in portion. "We focus on things like fresh zucchini, potatoes and onions Billed as "homestyle meals with a lighter twist," Cracker that are grilled and sautéed with barely anything to let the natu- Barrel's Wholesome Fixin's menu includes 10 meals under ral flavor come through," Mr. Czizek said. "Adding a hint 600 calories, including multigrain french toast with fruit and of citrus can also add great flavor without added calories, a honey citrus yogurt sauce, pecan-crusted catfish and but- and generous portions of mushrooms can add meaty texture termilk oven-baked chicken. without extra fat." Responding to heavier interest in lighter dining, more res- More operators have been packing plates with produce and taurant chains are luring health-conscious consumers with protein to create a hearty portion with fewer calories and fat, lower-calorie menus. Ms. Webster said. "With Cracker Barrel, it hasn't traditionally been part of their "Adding more filling ingredients, more whole grains, more wheelhouse, so that's not necessarily something you would proteins can make a meal as satisfying without significantly have expected," said Maeve Webster, senior director at the increasing calories," she said. "Maybe cutting back on the market research firm Datassential. "But I think because the carbohydrates but increasing something else, so the compo- restaurant industry in general is really under attack for its sition of the dish might not seem radically different, but you role, rightly or wrongly, in the situation for this country with can make some pretty significant cuts in calories." regard to weight and other health issues, and it absolutely across the board has to respond." In developing its Simple and Fit menu, IHOP has required "ongoing innovation, whether it is pairing with Quaker oat- Applebee's was an early leader in launching lighter menus meal to develop a proprietary recipe or creating an entire line of when it added its Weight Watchers-endorsed options in 2004 breakfast items - pancakes, waffles and crepes - that are made and an Under 550 Calories menu in 2010. The casual-dining with whole wheat," said Marie Grimm, vice-president of menu chain said its lighter selections have been a hit among even those development and innovation at IHOP. who aren't counting calories. Applebee's signature sirloin with Rather than featuring a separate section for slimmer spe- garlic herb shrimp, an item on the Under 550 Calories menu, cials on its menu, IHOP integrates the lower-calorie options was its most popular item a couple of years ago, said Peter among other offerings. 6 | Culinology | DECEMBER 2013

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Culinology -- December 2013

Culinology -- December 2013
Table of Contents
President's Letter - Passion leads to success
Emerging Trends - Fitter food service fare coming into focus
Menu Trends - A Dish by Any Other Name
Dessert - Desert Trends 2014
Healthy Children - Child's Play
Children's recipe challenge
Member Profile - R&D Road Show
Petits Fours
Upcoming Events/Ad Index

Culinology -- December 2013