Street foods to explore in 2019
Date: 21-02-2019 published by Nick Baines
Over the past ten years street food has evolved from a few butty wagons, into an eclectic and diverse food service category that now covers everything from tabletop market stall, to bricks and mortar restaurants. What’s interesting about the street food landscape, is that it’s as fast moving as the queues and reaches a far broader audience than many traditional restaurants ever could. So as the zeitgeist is formed and popular opinion decides the success of one cuisine over another, we take a look at what street foods to keep an eye on in 2019. What’s important to remember, is that dishes that are known as a street food dish are just as deserving of a menu or specials listing in your canteen, as it is on the curb side.
Central & South American dishes
From papusas and empanadas, to Venezuelan arepas, there’s a wide range of stuffed and folded food parcels that hail from South American countries. The interest in these on-the-go, hand-held street foods is likely to have followed on from the popularity of proper Mexican tacos (not the hard shell variety). This is still a growing area of interest but with a more precise approach being taken by vendors using ingredients like nixtalamised corn flour for the small circular tortillas, and filling them with authentic rotisserie cooked al pastor, barbecued pineapple and fresh pico de gallo.
Being more specific with regional dishes and cuisines from a country is beginning to yield some impressive results. While vendors of Chinese food might be choosing to focus on the plates from Hunan, Indian street food outfits are choosing to direct their attention to the food from the state of Gujarat. This is a primarily vegetarian state of India which may explain why the spicy dishes from this area are doing so well while the UK seems to be peak vegan! Bundobust, a craft beer and Gujarati food operation now has restaurants in both Leeds and Manchester knocking out everything from okra fries and chaat, to bel puri and tarka dahl.
Full circle on British staples
We only need to look at the cult, runaway success of the Gregg’s vegan sausage roll to see that the people are ready for new takes on British classics. Veganism is particularly prevalent right now, but what continues to reign is our affectation for savoury pastry. Pieminister saw this trend out on the horizon, which is why last year they released a vegan pie called Kevin, a vegan pastry containing a filling of tomatoes, red wine, mushrooms and onions. Whether you plump for a version of this, or turn to a classic like Homity pie, there’s a renewed enthusiasm for traditional British hand-held foods.
There have been many iterations of the rice bowl in the past twelve months. From layering sticky barbecued pork adorned with sesame seeds with sautéed vegetables and a fiery slick of chilli sauce, to bowls loaded with avocado, watermelon radish and spiralised courgette. The versatility of the rice bowl not only allows you to easily divert between carnivorous and vegan dishes, but also explore multiple cuisines from the same simple standpoint.
Whether you’re testing a far-flung concept, or dabbling with flavours from the East, we’re your inside contact to the freshest produce in optimum condition.
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