The “locally-grown/organic and seasonal food” mega-trend has definitely initiated “Top-to- tail” eating and the economic downturn has made it into a significant trend. “Top-to-tail” stands
for using more parts of the fish, meat and vegetables when cooking and throwing less away of the animal or plant.
While we are used to meat in coloured Styrofoam packages from the supermarket, at one point it was a whole animal with other parts than steaks, fillets and roasts.
Top-to-tail eating is a fine trend that bridges tradition and innovation all in the spirit of using all last bits of meat, fruit or greens.
We have seen an increasing number of restaurant menus getting accustomed to less requested cuts of meat (like trotters, tripe, feet, tongue, liver and kidneys) that are slowly cooked, braised or roosted into delicious and mouth-watering dishes.
To completely exploit the seasonal harvest, fruits are eaten fresh, made into juices, used as base for signature sauces, used in dessert and, from what is left, transformed into fruit butters and preserves for other periods of the year.
(PHOTO SOURCE: thebittenword.com FLICKR, CC)
Specialty jams and preserves
Chefs, who pride themselves on making everything from scratch and using regional produce in season, are rediscovering the food preservation tradition broadly used by their ancestors.
Remarkable jams, jellies and preserves are made to keep the ingredients’ maximum flavour and to be treasured in the seasons when fresh ingredients are scarcer.
Fig jam and blood orange marmalade are getting a privileged position next to scallops or duck breast, herbal jelly are used to glaze roasted poultry and game birds and canned peaches can be pureed to make cold soups.
Rustic rillettes –-meat, fish, or vegetables braised with fat until tender and packed into jars -- are newly popular among chefs. These “brown jams” are pots filled with flavour, or food condensed to its’ essence.
(PHOTO SOURCE: zoyahcubby FL ICKR, CC)
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