The Weekend Series: superfood trends you’ll actually want to try in 2017
We’re not going to pretend we are all about clean eating. We embrace the burgers, the cheese and the wine. But if we can eat something delicious that is also healthy, we wholeheartedly welcome that added bonus. If you’re ready to inject some extra nutrients into your daily intake, we’ve picked five of this year’s superfood trends that we’re interested in getting on board with.
Despite knowing full well the magic of life under the sea, most of us land lovers only go as far as sushi when it comes to ingesting seaweed. Perhaps we’ve all been turned off by the floating clumps we navigate at the beach, but it turns out that sea vegetables are some of the healthiest foods you can get. Seaweeds such as kelp, kombu, wakame, dulse and nori are just some of the plants that one can add into meals, with each proving to be a great source of iodine, vitamin C, vitamin A, protein, potassium, iron and zinc. Sea vegetables make for great season in soups and salads, but can be worked into a variety of dishes with a little bit of creativity.
Sometimes we get so caught up in foreign culinary trends that we forget to take advantage of the abundance of natural foods in our own back yards. Some of the world’s best restaurants are leading the charge in native food consumption, sourcing ingredients in foraging expeditions. When Noma visited Australia last year, its menu was made almost entirely from indigenous ingredients. Australians are spoilt for choice when it comes to native ingredients, with the likes of saltbush, warrigal greens and sea parsley available for those who care to look.
Okay, so this super drink is completely different from your run-of-the-mill shrubbery. A shrub in this instance is a form of drinking vinegar (originally concocted by Colonial-era sailors to fight scurvy) that fermenters are absolutely raving about. Tonics are brewed from various fruits, herbs and vegetables and then blended with soda water for a refreshing beverage. One of the best things about shrub is that it can be made easily at home using almost any fruit on hand, but we hear that ginger and turmeric, strawberry and lemon varieties are popular. The fruit-flavoured vinegar is sweetened with sugar, and when carbonated it can be used in mocktails and cocktails.
Image: The New York Times
Dulse (bacon-flavoured red algae)
We know that we’ve already mentioned sea vegetables, but this is a superfood THAT TASTES LIKE BACON GUYS. So it deserves its own time in the spotlight. In 2015 researchers at Oregon State University created and patented a new strain of red seaweed, or dulse, which is packed full of nutritional benefits and, when fried, tastes like bacon. Dulse is said to be a fantastic source of minerals, antioxidants, vitamins and protein – but let’s be honest, you had us at bacon.
Image: ZenShui/Laurence Mouton
Move over kombucha – it’s jun’s time to shine! Jun is a slightly effervescent drink made from fermented green tea and honey (as opposed to kombucha’s black tea and sugar) that requires less tea and sweetener per gallon. Steeping and brewing times for jun are reportedly shorter and it also brews at cooler temperatures. Jun is called probiotic champagne, with an alcohol content of two percent (so this one isn’t suitable for the kiddies). If you are a fan of kombucha and probiotic goods as a whole, make sure to try jun in 2017.
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