Winter Trends: Ugly Vegetables, Clean Eating, Artificial Backlash

Ugly Vegetables
A lot of what is grown in this country gets thrown away, wasted, or goes unused solely because of its appearance, but homely roduce tastes just as delicious as picture-perfect products. Utilizing what the industry refers to as seconds can go a long way towards reducing waste and saving resources—as well as help the bottom line.

  • Once an item is peeled, chopped,and added to sautes, soups, or braises, nobody will know or care if it started off with cosmetic issues like a slightly odd shape or subtle scars.
  • Think before throwing away ingredients that may not look perfect; spinach with broken leaves might not work in a salad, but can be cooked for quiches, omelets, and ramen bowls.
  • Keep it safe: remember that ugly doesn’t mean old or rotten. Freshness and flavor are critical when deciding what to use.

Clean Eating
The growing movement for clean eating includes foods that are free of additives, are not overly processed or refined, contain no added sugars or salts, and contain plenty of fiber, vitamins, and phytochemicals. Guess which ingredients meet these requirements each and every time? Yep— fresh fruits and vegetables.

  • Why wrap crunchy veggies with tortillas or bread made with refined flour when you can use blanched chard
  • Clean doesn’t mean boring…make your own in-house dressings and dips to spice things up!
  • How to tell if it’s clean? If it’s fresh produce, chances are it fits within this growing movement’s guidelines.

Trends_Winter 2016

Artificial Backlash
Millennials are leading the charge for all-natural ingredients. The days of bright pink cereals and flourescent orange mac & cheese are fading fast.

  • Skip dyed items and add color with bright fruits and vegetables like grapefruit and oranges.
  • Today’s students forego packaged ramen for the real deal packed with silky noodles, crunchy cabbage, peppery radishes, zesty green onions, and umamipacked mushrooms and/or nori.
  • Preservatives, antibiotics, high-fructose corn sweeteners, hydrogenated oils, gluten, MSG, and GMOs are other no-nos to a growing population; be aware of what’s in each of your menu items.

Information provided by Markon on 2016 Winter Trends Report