Culinology - June 2016 - (Page 8)

EMERGING trends The sun is rising on Japanese small plates It is definitely not sayonara, sushi. Instead, it's hello to okonomiyaki, takoyaki, Japanese curry and chawanmushi, among others.  Without a doubt, sushi and the other heavyweight contenders on Japanese casual comfort food menus, such as the ever-popular ramen, still are showing their strength. Additional Japanese menu items, however, are making inroads and beckoning both millennials and even those born after them-Generation Z-in particular. Asian/Noodle limited-service concepts in the U.S. increased sales 10% in 2015, according to Chicago-based research firm Technomic's "Top 500 Report." And, this "turning toward" Japanese is all about small plates and portion control, healthy options, global foods, umami and variety-which go hand-in-hand with American casual dining trends. It is also about many of these Japanese foods being served with beer, sake or even soju at Japanese brew pubs- called izakayas-that also serve snacks/small meals. The Japanese gastropub "There are a growing number of izakayas everywhere in the US today," said Kara Nielsen, independent food trend analyst, Oakland, Calif. "They are usually in urban areas with AsianAmerican populations, such as San Francisco, New York or Chicago. Even a [popular American chain restaurant] tried to create an izakaya a few years ago but it was just a little too early for it then." It's not too early now, however. Bon Appétit magazine named renowned Chef Sylvan Brackett's Izakaya Rintaro in San Francisco as one of its "Best New Restaurants in 2015." Ms. Nielsen added that the izakaya trend has been creeping 8| Culinology | JUNE 2016 By Susan Malovany forward slowly-trends take a while, she said-but that even non-Asian Americans' love for sushi, ramen, nori (edible seaweed), wasabi and tempura turned the tide to their seeking out new Japanese small plates at these brew pubs. Izakayas rising stars One of the most popular small plates served in izakayas is okonomiyaki, according to Gerry Ludwig, corporate consulting chef, Gordon Food Service, Grand Rapids, Mich. "Okonomiyaki, or savory pancakes, is a combination of two words- "okonomi" means your choice or as you like it and "yaki" means anything cooked on a griddle or grill," he explained. "This savory batter is mixed with freshly shredded cabbage and then topped with bits of meat and seafood, and the classic accompaniment for it is also bacon or pork belly. The sauce drizzled on top is a thickened, sweetened soy-based sauce that looks like a teriyaki glaze or the pancakes can also be drizzled with kewpie mayonnaise." Takoyaki is another popular izakaya dish. Takoyaki "menu mentions" increased 16.7% since last year, Technomic reported. Takoyaki are crispy, grilled dough balls, Mr. Ludwig said. "Chefs take a thick batter made with rice flour and egg and also water or dashi broth, and combine these together and add chopped squid and then griddle this on a takoyaki grill," he said. "These round balls are then garnished with sweetened soy sauce or kewpie mayonnaise and then diners toss them in their mouth just like popcorn. They're delicious." Chawanmushi, a savory Japanese custard, is another izakaya staple. "It's not a sweet dessert custard," Mr. Ludwig said. "To make it, you beat eggs and combine them with dashi stock and then put them in a ramekin with a little meat, shrimp

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Culinology - June 2016

Culinology - June 2016
Table of Contents
President's Letter - Best job competition
Emerging Trends - Five millenial-fueled food trends
The sun is rising on Japanese small plates
Flavor Trends - Seeing innovation through the smoke
Ingredient Trends - Adventures in ancient grains
Member Profile - Research chef extraordinaire
Expert Voices - Gas vs. electric
Industry News from the Research Chefs Association
Culinology Book - New book digs deep into Culinology
Petits Fours - Hormel launches product line for cancer patients
Vermont indicates enforcement priorities for GMO labeling law
Feeding Hispanic millennials’ craving for culture
Combo meals regaining appeal
Dairy alternatives straying from soy
News Bites - Trendspotting at the Culinology Expo
Ad Index

Culinology - June 2016