Since 2000, spice heavyweight, McCormick and Company, has issued their Flavor Forecast that tells us what hot trendy flavor combos will rule for the next 12 months.
The list is carefully made up by consulting their extensive network of researchers, trend experts, chefs, food technologists and sensory analysts, as well as gouing outside the company to talk with restaurant chefs, cookbook authors and TV food personalities.
Last year featured a lot of sweet and zesty combos, such as wasabi & maple, or black pepper and berry. This year’s focus is on health & wellness, as well as local artisanal ingredients. Although the Chile and Cocoa combo is kind of ho-hum, the Rubbed Sage and Rye Whiskey (inspired perhaps after watching “No Country For Old Men“) has my mouth watering.
McCormick® Forecasts Top 10 Flavor Pairings for 2008:
Oregano and Heirloom Beans: The intersection of functional food and fantastic flavor, this coupling is an antioxidant powerhouse.
Vanilla Bean and Cardamom: A flavor match made in heaven taps into America’s growing passion for indulgent, yet approachable luxury.
Chile and Cocoa: Old world authenticity in a modern context – the result is complex heat, depth, dimension and richness.
Coriander and Coconut Water: The essence of the tropics coaxes nuances of a chameleon-like spice bringing forth light, clean flavors.
Lemon Grass and Lychee: Exotic fruits from far away and the ever-growing popularity of Asian cuisines pave the way for this refreshing match.
Red Curry and Masa: This duo brings together Latin and Asian influences to create a unique flavor experience.
Orange Peel and Natural Wood: A new taste sensation is born when the smokiness of wood is matched with tangy orange peel.
Allspice and Exotic Meats: This adventurous combination represents America’s pursuit of experimentation.
Poppy Seed and Rose: An elegant and sensuous pair that captures the pursuit of cuisines from North Africa and the Middle East.
Rubbed Sage and Rye Whiskey: A powerful, all-American team – sage is a wonderful complement to the dry, gutsy nature of rye whiskey, a historic brew poised for a great renaissance.
For new recipes that bring these pairings to life, visit www.mccormick.com.