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Canadian Grocer: What are the top taste trends of tomorrow?Wednesday, December 09, 2015 > 09:03:07
McCormick unveils emerging trends and flavours in annual Flavour Forecast
Heat and tang, tropical Asian and blends with benefits are some of the six emerging flavour trends Canadians will enjoy next year, according to McCormick & Company.
The spices and seasonings company has unveiled its annual McCormick “Flavour Forecast” revealing the trends it hopes will shape culinary exploration and innovation on grocery shelves, homes and restaurants.
It takes about a year to identify the trends, in a process that involves McCormick’s global team, including chefs, trend trackers, food technologists and representatives from the retail, food service and industrial sectors, says Lysang Lay, manager of flavour insights and communications at McCormick Canada.
“This approach really allows us to give a 360 degree view on the whole eating experience,” says Lay, who has been involved with the “Flavour Forecast” for the last three years.
Lay says she is surprised at the speed at which consumers are adopting new flavours and that are no signs acceptance of new flavours is slowing down.
McCormick plans to launch 56 new consumer products inspired by “Flavour Forecast” trends next year around the year, at least a handful of which will be launched in Canada, Lay says.
McCormick, which introduced the “Flavour Forecast” in 2000, is using digital and social channels and the website Favour.ca to teach consumers about the trends.
The emerging trends and flavours are:
Alternative “Pulse” Proteins
The UN declared 2016 as the International Year of the Pulse, making it the ideal time to explore in depth the flavours and health benefits of pulses. Among the pulses that are elevated when paired with various ingredients are pigeon peas, called toor dal when split, and traditionally paired with cumin and coconut; cranberry beans, also called borlotti, are enhanced with sage and Albariño wine; and black beluga lentils are accented with peach and mustard.
Involves using ancient herbs and greens in a more modern way. It includes the rediscovery of ancient herbs like thyme, peppermint, parsley, lavender and rosemary as well as Amaranth, an ancient grain of the Aztecs that has a nutty, earthy flavour and mescal, a smoky Mexican liquor made from the agave plant.
Blends with Benefits
“With health and wellness top of mind with consumers, there’s always that curiosity and interest in finding ways to really create flavourful meals that are good for you,” Lay says. Instead of just putting flaxseed or chia seed on salads or in milkshakes, you can create healthy flavour by incorporating them into spice blends, she says. Matcha’s slightly bitter notes are balanced by ginger and citrus; chia seed becomes zesty when paired with citrus, chili and garlic; and flaxseed enhances savoury dishes when combined with Mediterranean herbs.
“We’re starting to see ingredients from our kitchen pantries emerging into beverage and beverage emerging into our cooking techniques,” Lay says. This trend is all about new tastes for beverages and uses three classic culinary techniques: Pickling combines tart with spice for zesty results, roasting to add richness with a distinctive browned flavour and brûléed ingredients to provide depth with a caramelized sugar note.
Heat + Tang
This is about the evolution of a “chilies obsession” that McCormick identified in 2014 and is all about contrasting flavours, Lay says. “When heat is paired with more of a tang-flavoured profile, it amplifies it and it really creates a nice burst of flavour experience when applied with food.” It involves Peruvian chilies like rocoto, ají amarillo and ají panca paired with lime and sambal sauce made with chilies, rice vinegar and garlic.
Involves the discovery of Malaysian and Filipino cuisine that many consumers have not yet experienced. Its highlights are: Rendang curry, a Malaysian spice paste that delivers mild heat and is made from chilies, lemongrass, garlic, ginger, tamarind, coriander and turmeric; and pinoy BBQ, a popular Filipino street food, flavoured with soy sauce, lemon, garlic, sugar, pepper and banana ketchup.