Trends: The Evolving Chef’s Hat

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Foodservice operators’ roles are changing in big ways. In the era of #metoo, open kitchens, and morphing delivery platforms, many chefs are creating more collaborative spaces and challenging old-school culinary traditions. With labor being one of today’s top challenges, providing safe, creative workplaces that allow employees to contribute and learn are definitely modern goals.
  • Traditional top-down hierarchies work in some kitchens, but Millennial cooks are increasingly using a cooperative model where all levels have input and have their voices heard.
  • Transparency may be a buzzword, but diners truly do want to know what is in their food and how it is prepared. Open kitchens allow guests to interact or at least observe the process.
  • As the dine-in lifestyle becomes more prevalent, chefs must fine-tune delivery services to ensure customers choose them.

Diners are increasingly hyper-focused on high-protein and plant-based foods. Alongside all of the new-fangled, lab-based, cell-cultured options out there is the humble bean. A staple food for millenia, beans are being re-examined as a healthy, versatile ingredient worthy of menu inclusion.

  • Retro and heirloom recipes—like Southern succotash, French cassoulet, and Cajun red beans and rice—fit the bill for those in search of authenticity.
  • Most world cuisines incorporate some type of bean in their classic dishes. Think feijoada in Brazil, black beans and rice with plantains in Puerto Rico, and garbanzo beans in Israel. Modern interpretations of these recipes are packed with produce and herbs.
  • The creamy texture of mung beans is proving an ideal substitute for those that are eliminating soy from their diets.