12 February 2014

New dessert trends, coming to a plate near you

Source: The Food Channel
First the cronut, the mashup between a croissant and a doughnut; what type of dessert will take the world by storm next?

Those who have partners or customers with sweet tooths may be interested in the Top Ten Dessert Trends for 2014 report, released by the Food Channel and sponsored by Otis Spunkmeyer

Based on research conducted in conjunction with CultureWaves, the list identifies the significant behaviors of consumers, food service professionals and manufacturers in the US, together with original recipes and photographs to illustrate each trend. Asia typically watches the US very closely, so expect these desserts in a restaurant near you very soon:

The Food Channel Top 10 Dessert Trends for 2014
Spoon Desserts – Puddings and other soft desserts—called "spoonables"—are big. These are not artistically served in a Chinese soup spoon, but in little ceramic pots called 'ramekins'.

The more layers the better, helped by new tools that make it easy to bake and divide cakes into layers. Just about anything can be layered, from muffins to cheesecakes to trifles.
Hand Pies - The mini dessert has extended itself to the pie. Hand pies are sealed on all sides and usually hold a fruit mixture, but expect to find them filled with just about anything this year.

Midwestern Influence - One of the big trends for 2014 is cuisine from the Midwest of the US. When it comes to desserts that means cobblers, pies, crisps, tarts, upside down cakes, and bar cookies.  

Mashups and Muffins - Muffins are the new doughnuts, or what some are calling the duffin. The new mashup isn’t really about putting unlike things together as much as it is creating a new form of something you love.

Pepper, Flavored Salts, and International Spices - New desserts on the menu are heavy on the stronger spices. Cracked pepper is particularly on the rise, perhaps because it gives a visible difference to a dessert plate without an overwhelming flavour punch, the company says. Suggestions include trying it in scones in place of fruit, with desserts made with fruit and cream, on ice cream, in bread pudding, in cookies and in candy. Sea salt can also be replaced with flavoured salts.

Dessert Butters - These are actually ground-up cookies turned into a soft filling that can be rolling into a truffle or added to a sandwich cookie, such as the PB and Chocolate Cookie.

Crepes - Versatile crepes are new again, as they can be a savoury main course or an amazing dessert.

Crepes in a prawn dish at Sakae Sushi, Singapore
Nuts - Nuts are big in desserts right now.

Small Batch Desserts - Americans have discovered smaller portions, or creating artisanally.  

The Food Channel says dessert recipes are downsizing into "one-offs", where you get a small batch of homemade chocolates, or a few dipped marshmallows, or a taffy pull that results in just a few pieces of taffy.