The editors, cooks and food-curious experts at Food Network Kitchens are always looking for what’s fun, delicious and next. It’s become a given that food fans, chefs and media types of all sorts look ahead and share their expectations. From their glimpse into the 2014 crystal ball, here’s a not-so-serious, definitely unscientific look at the food trends seen as up-and-coming.
“It’s kind of a wild time in food, full of contradictions,” says Katherine Alford, SVP of Culinary at Food Network. “On one hand people are more adventurous than ever. They’re eating Korean and Szechwan, seeking out crazy-hot ghost peppers, and mixing and matching to make outlandish hybrids of comfort foods. But that’s all balanced with a growing demand for food that matters more to our bodies’ well-being and the planet’s well-being, too.” Recently and still coming, you can see an eclectic mix of comfort food and healthy food, plus local picks as well as far-flung favorites. “In the past few years we’ve upped our spices, eaten more veggies and grown to expect some playfulness on the plate,” Alford says. “With all that, next year I’m keeping my eye on what’s cooking right here in America’s heartland. There is real excitement in the fresh voices cooking there. As for 2014, we hope what we found is inspiring with a little wishful thinking mixed in.” Tell us what you’re looking forward to as the next delicious food on your table in the new year.