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Cooking at Home, Sustainability and Wellness on Menu for 2020

NEW YORK, Oct. 23, 2019 -- More home cooking, less food waste, flavors from East Africa and the end of cauliflower's moment in the spotlight are some of the predictions for 2020 that emerged at the fifth annual The Next Big Bite trends event presented by Les Dames d'Escoffier New York (LDNY).

LDNY is an invite-only women's culinary organization whose members are leaders in their fields and whose main mission is education, advocacy and philanthropy in food, fine beverage and hospitality.

The fundraising event, held October 15th at Redeemer W83 Center in New York, featured a panel of rising stars and prominent names in the culinary world who shared their views on what we will cook, eat, drink and crave next year.

Panelists included Justin Chapple, culinary director at large at Food & Wine, Jake Cohen, editorial and test kitchen director of feedfeed, Gaby Dalkin, creator of the website What's Gaby Cooking, Cassy Joy Garcia, a nutrition consultant and creator of the influential Fed + Fit blog and podcast, Vallery Lomas, a lawyer turned baking blogger and winner of ABC's season three of The Great American Baking Show and Megan Scott, a member of the team behind the new edition of the Joy of Cooking.

Sarah Carey, editorial director, food and entertaining, for Martha Stewart Living served as moderator. The keynote was delivered by Deb Perelman, a self-taught home cook and creator of the super popular cooking blog Smitten KitchenJessica B. Harris, noted culinary historian and orator, presented the closing keynote.

Perelman said her vision for 2020 isn't driven by the next big thing. Instead, like many cooks juggling work and family, she's "just looking for my new favorite thing to cook. And hopefully in time for dinner."

Nevertheless, Perelman predicts shifts in dining habits. People will cook and entertain more at home amid economic and political uncertainty, and will be more adept at preparing meals thanks to the wealth of information available. "They'll be cooking as a break from the news," she said.

Against a backdrop of changing tastes and concerns about wellness and the environment, panelists agreed that interest in cooking—and cookbooks--will remain strong. "More and more folks want to learn," said Chapple, who noted that many people buying his own cookbooks are doing so for kids.

Garcia, who has built a strong online following across various platforms, said cookbooks give her audience something tangible. "That is a really important touchpoint for people when we are so digital," she said.

Panelists shared trends they wish would disappear: baby vegetables, diet and nutrition fads such at keto and paleo, associating cocktails with health benefits, and charcoal in food such as the baguettes Lomas found on a recent trip to Paris. Perelman noted her Smitten Kitchen audience is losing interest in cauliflower versions of items such as rice, pizza and gnocchi and other trendy items including pumpkin spice, avocado toast, aquafaba, truffle oil, pink salt, instapots, meal kits and more.

Panelists said food trends to look for include sustainable seafood, vegan alternatives for recipe ingredients and more interest in spice and acid.  

Harris, who gave her keynote address via video, predicts we'll be seeing more "new foods from unknown and untapped, or unheralded cultures." Examples include fonio, a gluten-free grain from Senegal likened to a cross between quinoa and couscous, ahi peppers from Peru, and new rice varieties and greens. She also expects to see more foods from Eastern Africa, including Kenya, and Caribbean food "going beyond jerk, rice and peas" such as callaloo and a "deep, richly seasoned" pepperpot stew.

"Food is culture. What's on our plate often reflects who we are. In the upcoming year we will be serving it up and savoring it thoroughly. We will need that comfort because we have got a lot going on," Harris said.

The Next Big Bite was sponsored by Kerrygold, Wolf Gourmet, Melitta, Hestan Culinary, Niman Ranch, Abigail Kirsch, Catskill Provisions, Ramona, Kris Wine, La Caravelle Champagne, Los Dos, New Belgium and Liberty Coca-Cola.

About Les Dames d'Escoffier New York

Les Dames d'Escoffier is the preeminent organization of women who are leaders in the fields of food, fine beverage and hospitality. The New York chapter (LDNY) is the founding and largest of the 42 chapters in the United States and abroad. Established in 1976 by Carol Brock (food reporter for the Sunday New York Daily News at the time), LDNY has more than 160 members.  Twitter and Instagram: @LesDamesNY; Facebook: @Les Dames d'Escoffier New York.  #TheNextBigBite - #LesDamesNY

For selected event photos, click here.

Media Contact:
Louise Kramer 

SOURCE Les Dames d'Escoffier New York

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