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The Word on the Street…

Investigating this summer’s food and drink trends
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Our famous Michelin Inspectors continually travel the globe in search of new restaurants. Eating and drinking a huge variety of different things at every type of place imaginable means that they’re right up there with all of the latest trends. Here’s what they’ve come across along the way:

Think Pink

A refreshing chilled rosé wine has always been synonymous with summer but now anything pink seems to have plenty of appeal when the sun peeks out from behind the clouds. The colours remind us of blossoming flowers and the fruity scents evoke memories of balmy days, while the appealing tones – from baby pink to fuchsia – make them perfect for Instagram too!

Gin leads the way, offering everything from tart to sweet, courtesy of concoctions including rhubarb, cranberry, raspberry, strawberry, blackberry, redcurrant, pink grapefruit, cherry blossom, hibiscus and rose. They are also very versatile: they can be drunk straight over ice; mixed with tonic, prosecco or lemonade; or made into cocktails.

Aside from gin there are also rosy varieties of vodka, tequila, rum, port, champagne, limoncello, mead and liqueurs on offer… the pink-hued options are endless!

Snowbergines

White Aubergines or Eggplants – sometimes also known as Snowbergines – are available during the summer months. They look very similar to their purple cousins but have firmer skin (so should be peeled before cooking) and a milder, creamier, lighter flavour. Nutrition-wise, they are high in potassium and contain B vitamins, magnesium, and copper; they also soak up less moisture when cooking, so are an ideal alternative for a low-carb moussaka. They are best suited to grilling, baking, sautéing or frying.

Are you going nuts?

You’ve heard of almond milk and coconut milk – maybe even walnut or pecan milk – but what about peanut milk?

This new alternative has a richer, fuller flavour than other nut-based milks – and a higher protein content too, almost matching that of dairy. It’s great for smoothies and chocolate versions are also available – perfect for heating over the stove!

Sugar and spice…

Timut pepper
is on the rise – it originates from Nepal and comes from the same family as Sichuan pepper, however its flavour and aroma are of zesty citrus and almost grapefruit like. It pairs equally well with savoury and sweet dishes – and in particular, chocolate.

Pandan Leaf
is now being billed as being the new matcha. This south Asian leaf can be used as an infusion in spirits and cocktails – or in water instead of mint or citrus. The flavour is similar to that of vanilla but grassier and almost coconutty.

African Star Apple
– sometimes also referred to as the African Star Cherry – is also increasingly appearing on menus. The fruit has a distinct aroma and used to make drinks, jams and jellies. It’s packed with vitamins, minerals and irons (including vitamins A and C, and calcium). It’s also high in fibre and helps to lower blood sugar and cholesterol. Don’t be put off by the smell!

Photo Credit: Christine Trant

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