Word by Shaunne Cordier, Executive Chef at Cassette Cafe
2023 will be here before we know it and in true end-of-year fashion, we are gearing up to say both hello and goodbye to food trends.
As the years roll on by, consumers are becoming increasingly savvier and health conscious – for both their wellbeing and that of the planet – meaning that innovation remains at the heart of the food and beverage industry. Trends are no longer just croissant-donut hybrids or the like; they are a driving force for positive change.
While we walk to the beat of our own drum here at Cassette, our culinary offering has always reflected our customers’ ever-changing cravings made using sustainably sourced, local ingredients. Is this set to change with the new year? Here are three food trends making their way into 2023.
When we strip back the edgy interiors, buzzing atmosphere and world-class service that have become synonymous with the region’s restaurants, cafes and eateries, what’s left? Food.
It comes as no surprise that agriculture is at the forefront of today’s F&B trends. With soil health, regenerative agriculture and nitrogen fertiliser becoming top of mind for farmers, it seems as though more consumers are educating themselves on what these concepts mean for them. They no longer trust the label on a product and food producers know it, with the most popular callout on produce set to become ‘grown using regenerative agriculture’. This will allow consumers to make educated decisions by actively selecting products that help increase soil biodiversity, improve water quality, reduce emissions, of course, and taste better.
But that’s just the tip of the iceberg. Other key trends include further emphasis on supporting local. The UAE in particular has made significant progress in establishing regional agricultural structures, allowing more and more people (including us at Cassette) to enjoy tasty, nutrient-rich produce grown right here.
Another year, another call for us to rethink how we consume meat. Sometimes all you want is to chow down on a juicy beef burger. But as the saying goes, variety is the spice of life and more and more, diners are on the hunt for creative menus that deliver the same experience of eating meat without having to consume an animal.
This attitude has also been extended to one of Mother Earth’s most precious resources: the ocean. With overfishing reaching an all-time high, the need for seafood alternatives has become more apparent and there is opportunity for this space to take off.
So, how is this being put into practice? At Cassette, for example, we know that plant-based alternatives can be just as tasty as the original. From coconut bacon to vegan lobster, tapping into the power of plants and their versatility is all part of the fun (and the solution).
For the past few years several trends within in the food industry have been tethered to social media. From delicious looking dishes on Instagram to dedicated recipe accounts on TikTok, consumers have been inspired by the wonderful world of food. Whether its flavours from a faraway destination or the use of ingredients you wouldn’t ordinarily find in your pantry at home, there’s a lot to be said for social media’s power to directly impact what and how we want to eat.
Creative culinary ideas are being ignited by global flavours and ingredients. The more people learn about how diverse our world’s food is, the more they want to see them mixed and matched in lively fusion dishes – both at home with their own kitchen pursuits and in their favourite eateries. Countries that are home to such a bold and vibrant variety of spices such as Sri Lanka, India and other parts of Asia will play a key role in this flavour profiling. Cuisines no longer have to ‘stay in their lane’ in 2023, in fact, they are being encouraged to take the path less travelled in order to deliver as much flavour as possible.
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