Wednesday, November 5, 2014

The End of the Trend

Sometimes I like to throw a question out and ask what all our readers think about a subject. So I did that. I posted this question on Facebook and then we'll talk about the answers-

"What is a current food trend that you wish would just go away?"

A couple people missed the mark, with answers like "McDonald's" and "high food prices"- not even in the ballpark. But I did get some great responses. What were they?

Kale- I for one am late to the kale party, but I definitely can understand this answer. For a while it seemed like everyone was making kale chips. Kale in smoothies with fruit kind of.......grosses me out. As a new kale eater I am just learning how to integrate this leafy green into different dishes but I can understand how anyone who follows food trends just might already be over it. Even when I posted a request to friends to help me find some interesting recipes for kale, I was overwhelmingly answered with kale chips. I'm pretty sure I don't want dried up leaves to munch on. So yes, the kale explosion is over. Time to move to the next super food.

Balsamic vinegar-  I am not on board with this at all, but I am a balsamic worshiper. I don't really see it as a trend, or even a trendy ingredient really. Sadly, most of what we use in the US is not true balsamic, even in upscale restaurants- rather it's a reduced and further sweetened vinegar with caramel coloring. A taste of real, true balsamic is a real treat.

Battered and deep fried anything-  I am not a fan of deep fried foods, in general. I rarely, if ever, deep fry anything I cook, and don't normally order fried foods if eating out. Not because I'm watching what I eat but just because I prefer to not eat so much oil and I am terrified of fire, so I don't even own a fryer. The worst time of year for these battered and fried treats are during the summer months, when all the fairs and festivals are going on- fried food vendors are everywhere,and they fry EVERYTHING- candy bars, Oreos, sticks of butter........ yuck.

Cupcakes-  Yep. I agree. Cupcakes are everywhere, even on television. Cupcake bakeries, cupcake competition shows. We have certainly gone into overdrive since the original Sprinkles Cupcake Bakery opened and created a monster. Pinterest is filled to the brim with cupcake recipes and decorating ideas. People are passing on the traditional wedding cake and instead doing cupcake displays. And don't get me started on cake POPS. Yes, I agree. It's time to say goodbye to cupcakes.

Paleo-  I had to look this one up. I've heard people talk about it and know a handful of people who eat a paleo diet but I really didn't know the specifics. Supposedly the diet is meant to reflect the foods that would have been available to people living during the Paleolithic period. Basically protein and non-starchy vegetables and fruits. No grains. Generally I am not a fan of any restrictive diet that takes large groups of food out of our diets. 

Clean Eating-  Apparently The Chef and I have accidentally been following this trend and didn't realize it. Clean eating is simply avoiding processed or refined foods and sticking to whole and unprocessed foods. We do so because we COOK but I can understand why others would choose this lifestyle. Processed food is full of junk. Period. As a trend, it's like any fad diet. It will be a buzzword for a while, and then fade away. In reality, clean eating is just what people did a couple generations ago before humanity became focused on fast and easy.

Food on a stick-  This is another food that goes hand in hand with fair season. Meant to be easy to eat while wandering around the fairgrounds, I can agree, this is a little overboard. The Iowa State Fair has no shortage of foods on a stick and a great many of them could be eaten without a stick just as easily, if not easier. Rice Krispie Treat on a stick. Get rid of the stick. Salad on a stick? Again, no. Impossible to dip into dressing and NOT have it all over your face. Have a seat and eat a salad. 

Bacon everything-  I love bacon. I cook with bacon. Sometimes, that is. Think about it- bacon wrapped everything is all over Pinterest and food blogs. Bacon ice cream. Bacon candy. Bacon donuts. Bacon wrapped hot dogs, tator tots, steak, whole turkeys, meatloaf, meatballs. Bacon vodka. Bacon milkshakes. Bacon OVERLOAD!!! Enough already!

Chimichurri-  The friend who gave this answer said "Chimichurri is the new aioli" and I absolutely agree! Aioli, a holdover from the mid 90s, was one of those things I thought would never go away. Mayo with a fancy name.... get out of here. I am seeing the same thing with chimichurri. I have made it once. That was enough. Not a big fan. I see this one everywhere- all kinds of recipes, as a marinade, a finishing sauce, a drizzle, a condiment. It's also not an especially attractive sauce. This one I also agree- chimi needs to go.

Chipotle pepper- As a pepper lover, I don't dislike chipotle, but I totally understand why the person who gave this answer did- chipotle is pretty much the bacon of the pepper world. It's in everything. It's everywhere. It's nothing special to begin with- roasted smoked jalapeno. Dried they look like......something a dog left behind. In adobo sauce they are just smooshy and gross. It's time to move on. Not to ghost peppers, either. Been there done that.

Pumpkin everything-  This one is a seasonal trend that will be gone before we know it. But it will be back, year after year. Every autumn pumpkin and pumpkin spice are given the "bacon treatment" and are added to everything- coffee, ice cream, cake, pie, savory sides, pancakes, candles, soap and room sprays. *cough*

And my food trend I wish would go away- sliders. Seriously people, they are just little sandwiches. That's all. White Castle may be credited with inventing the slider, but it's gone Frankenstein since then. Every sandwich appears in miniature, on menus, blogs, Pinterest, in cookbooks. Some of them are just plain goofy. BLT Sliders are just BLTs- quartered!!! Peanut butter and jelly sliders? No. Leftover Turkey and Stuffing Sliders? NO! Those are just leftovers on a dinner roll- something we have been eating for decades. Kind of like the cupcake craze, it's time to make a real sandwich again and stop with the miniatures!

So, The Chef and I want to hear from you guys. What is a food trend you would like to see go away?


  1. This is such a fun post. I hardly ever order sliders, but I do like little sandwiches. The thing I don't love about burger sliders is that they're so often overcooked. I'm also with people on paleo and pumpkin everything. I love balsamic vinegar though! And fried food;)

    1. Thanks Jeni! I do soooo love balsamic too. As for sliders, burger sliders are fun but yes they are almost always smashed and cooked well done. All these other goofy sliders........go away!!! I don't want to eat 4 mini anything to make a meal :)