Culinology - December 2015 - (Page 8)

EMERGING trends Gourmet porridge trend has ancient grain appeal The humble bowl of porridge is appearing on more menus across all dayparts, proving that the down to earth dish may have what it takes to be one of 2016's leading food trends. "I love oatmeal, but there is so much more to it," said Maria Speck, author of "Simply Ancient Grains," of the growing interest in a comforting bowl of cooked grains with unexpected toppings. "A young generation of chefs across the country is experimenting with new grains," she said, and the underutilized ingredients offer unique textures, subtle flavors and exciting colors - think of black rice and golden polenta - that bring a fresh culinary perspective. "They're as easy to cook as a pot of pasta and extremely forgiving," she said. "If you're a chef, you look for these things." While the trend has already taken off in parts of Europe, at porridge-only restaurants like London's Porridge Café and Denmark's Grød, grain combinations and savory breakfast bowls are making appearances on upscale menus in the US. At Little Park, New York City, Heirloom Grain Porridge is served with hen of the woods mushrooms, poached eggs and pine nuts. Sqirl Los Angeles popularized the savory breakfast brown rice bowl with Sorrel Pesto Rice topped with preserved Meyer lemon, radish, feta and poached egg, and international chain Le Pain Quotidien has added an Organic Brown Rice Pudding to its brunch menu. Alluring alternatives "This concept is popping up more and more on popular restaurant menus," said Nicholas Ahrens, product applications culinologist at Bay State Milling Company, Quincy, Mass., a provider of flours and plant-based ingredients. "The consumer is looking for less processed or unprocessed foods in the raw or whole form," he said, adding that whole grains and seeds fit well within this trend and are versatile enough to be used in either sweet or savory concepts. "An ancient grain porridge can be made with milk, brown sugar and cinnamon in the morning to create a warm, wholesome breakfast. Those same grains can be cooked in a rich chicken broth finished with roasted vegetables and grilled chicken to create a healthy lunch or dinner option." It is important to mix and match components appropriately, according to Mr. Ahrens, because each grain and seed performs differently. "Each has its optimum absorption and rate of hydration," he Maria Speck's Burgundy Bulgur from "Simply Ancient Grains". Photo: Erin Kunkel 8 | Culinology | DECEMBER 2015

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Culinology - December 2015

Culinology - December 2015
Table of Contents
President's Letter - A day in the life
Emerging Trends - Hot cocoa flavor heats up
Gourmet porridge trend has ancient grain appeal
Ingredient Applications - Quality over calories
LYFE – Love Your Food Everyday
Flavor Trends - Sweet heat takes flight
Member Profile - A fresh perspective
Expert Voices - Cinnabon’s director of R&D finds room for innovation
Industry News - Mile High City hosts Future of Food Conference
Industry mourns loss of chef-entrepreneur Paul Prudhomme
Petits Fours - Tacos on the menu
Mintel identifies emerging trends for 2016
Ad Index

Culinology - December 2015