Were You Obsessed With These Food Trends?

No doubt about it, 2014 was one tasty year. We tried our first bulletproof coffee, guzzled green juice, made a steak out of a cauliflower, and continued to obsess over Cronuts. And, somehow we're still hungry. To celebrate all this fine eating, we asked the experts about the top culinary crazes that took over our home kitchens, restaurants, and Instas.
Photographed by Molly Cranna.
Advertisement
Avocado Toast
Toast has been a hit for several years but this was the year of its official marriage with ripe avocado — along with every topping we could think of: olive oil, lemon juice, red peppers, poached eggs, and bacon. We suspect it had something to do with toast being on-trend (yes, seriously) and everyone's realization that everything is better with avocado.
Dessert Mash-Ups
In 2013, the Cronut craze kicked off an insatiable lust for Frankenpastries that blended cookies, cakes, and pies. Madness? Nah. "I'm all for the mash-up, but the taste has got to trump the novelty,” says Kat Kinsman, editor-in-chief of Tasting Table. One sweet that did it right? Robicelli's Nutellasagna.
Cauliflower Steak
We were into this — with a few caveats. "As long as it's sufficiently seasoned, and as long as the cook understands that just because you call it a steak, that doesn't mean it's a protein. There needs to be some balance in the accompaniments," says Eater national features editor Helen Rosner. "Maybe it undercuts the whole point of a cauliflower steak, but the best version of one I've ever had was roasted in duck fat." Sorry vegetarians, but that sounds nom-tastic.
Photographed by Alice Gao.
Bulletproof Coffee
We can't think of a more polarizing beverage than coffee, and we're decidedly mixed about this trend. "I recently tried bulletproof coffee during a (painfully) early morning meeting in Chicago. The grease screwed up my lipstick and I was cranky all day," Kinsman says.
Advertisement
"I'm not a nutritional chemist, so what the hell do I know about the actual performance benefits of ingesting a combination of lipids and caffeine?" says Rosner. "But, bulletproof coffee sounds pretty inoffensive to me. Butter's just one step away from heavy cream, and that's delicious."
Chia Seeds
This new super food has enjoyed serious popularity all year and shows no signs of slowing down. You don’t have to be a chef to take these protein-power packed seeds and make tapioca-like puddings, with sweet or savory additions. Snack on.
So, what's next?
Fanciness. "Classical French food is totally back — part of the whole resurgence of the '90s thing that's happening everywhere in high-end culture," says Rosner. "I'll bet dollars to donuts that both home cooks and restaurant cooks are going to collectively rediscover the profound pleasures to be found in the iconic cookbooks of the '80s and '90s: The Silver Palate, the Zuni Cafe Cookbook, and Jeremiah Tower's New American Classics."
And also, home cooking. Lots more of it. "Judging from our readers' at Tasting Table's engagement with recipes, the New York Times' massive investment in their cooking site and rebranding as the Food section and the general engagement with cooking content online, I'm gathering that I'm not alone," says Kinsman.
Advertisement