If you thought that some of the trends you read about in our cover story were a bit odd, then you’re going to think these international trends are truly bizarre!
By Lynn N. Capri
1) Edible Dirt ~ Yes, you read correctly. The handfuls of dirt that the strange kid at the playground used to snack on are now edible. It’s made of charred ingredients ranging from mixtures of malt and beer to onion or mushroom ash. Chefs are using this “soil” to create an earthy appearance to food, even serving it in terracotta pots. Guess it’s a new definition of having a dirty mouth.
2) Pigs’ Feet ~ Around for centuries (I’m guessing for as long as pigs have been), pigs’ feet are now being used in the kitchens and served on the tables in restaurants helmed by great chefs.
3) Cheese ~ We’re not talkin’ about just any cheese, oh no, but cheese made from breast milk. Chef Daniel Angerer of New York (no surprise there) decided to use his wife’s breast milk to make cheese while he was looking for sustainable food products ~ and he actually placed it on his menu. Let’s keep our fingers crossed that this is one trend that does NOT reach us here in Central MA!
4) Corn Fungus ~ Cuitlacoche ~ or corn smut, as it’s also called ~ has long been popular in Mexico and results from corn kernels becoming engorged with tumors after they’re infected by a fungus and take on a mushroom-like taste. Personally, I like to avoid any food that can be described with the words “tumors” and “infected,” but that’s just me ~ and maybe I’ll be missing out on one of life’s greatest pleasures, but it’s a risk I’m willing to take.
5) Body Sushi- This trend has popped up in TV shows (Remember the episode of “Sex in the City” when Samantha “dressed” in homemade sushi for Smith right before she broke it off with him for good?) and ~ we’re sure ~ in the kitchens/dining rooms of some very daring young women, but Nyotaimori is where you actually are able to use a person as your serving dish for sushi. A naked woman, private areas covered by leaves, lies on a table and sushi is placed all over her body for diners to enjoy. It is believed that body temperature sushi allows diners to better experience the taste and texture. There are so many comments we could make, but we’re going to take the high road and…not.