Another good exhibition for those wanting to keep up with food trends is Lunch, held at the Business Design Centre, Islington in September and focussing on food to go.
At this year’s presentation we sampled some Up & Go liquid breakfast, made from skimmed milk and oats. Apparently a 330 ml carton of this replaces a bowl of cereal with milk, and though it was pleasant to drink we personally prefer our big breakfast bowl of home-mixed museli with oat clusters for crunchy contrast. It is , however a growing trend for thrusting young types, especially in Australia, to ditch the bowl of traditional cereals in favour of something they can eat or drink whilst driving, perhaps with a mobile phone in the other hand, so who are we to carp?
Meanwhile the use of the Indian spice mixture called chai continues to grow as an added taste for tea, coffee and other beverages.Traditionally based on a mixture of ginger and cardoman and formerly just added to black tea, chai (origin of the British word char for tea) is now also likely to contain other ingredients such as cloves, cinnamon, star anise, fennel, peppercorn, nutmeg, mace, cumin and turmeric and allspice. Chilli chai liquid breakfast, anyone?
The days of crisps being just plain with a little blue bag of salt as an optional addition are long gone though with the passion for all things retro they could come back to join the hundreds of new flavours now on the market. Some of these are offered by Savoursmiths crisps who have truffle and rosemary, champagne and chilli and parmesan and port to tickle the tastebuds.
Last but not least for this fan of Japanese cuisine and all things sushi we loved the seaweed snack from Welsh firm Selwyns. This is made from top grade nori from Japan, pressed into wafer-thin, feather-light sheets and triple roasted with a number of additional flavourings. Our clear favourite was the simple but highly effective sea salt and vinegar combination, which for us added to the strong taste of the sea experience, but they also have coconut and chilli and honey and sesame. Healthy eaters will want to know that there are only a dozen calories per pack and that nori is stuffed with vitamins, minerals such as calcium, omega 3 and iodine.