Tuesday, November 1, 2011

The tastes of the season - savory, sweet, traditional and scrumptious



The holiday season is fast approaching - and this year there are some new tastes joining traditional favorites to tempt even the most temperamental palates.

Industry trend watcher Andrew Freeman predicted earlier this year that one of the trends for 2011 would also include a search for simplicity and pure

flavors, using powders and dried ingredients. You'll see many of these flavorings as food manufacturers roll out their holiday fare this fall and winter.

According to the Cooking Channel, one of the biggest trends is adding a modern touch to homemade foods. Food manufacturers like The Kansas City Steak Company are embracing the trend and adding some interesting flavors to their products.

"Our customers are asking for more tasteful adventures for their holiday menus," says Edward Scavuzzo, President of Kansas City Steak Company. "We know that spice consumption in this country is at an all-time high - according to McCormick & Company spice consumption is growing more than three times as fast as the population.

Today's pantry consists of about 40 different seasonings, compared to less than 10 in the 1950s.

We have been providing our customers with top-of-the-line meats since 1932. We love blending these flavor trends into our product mix and adding them to our more traditional, and always flavorful, steaks and roasts."

Here are some flavor trends to watch for this holiday season.

1. Espresso is a wonderful flavor enhancer to spice rubs. Whether it's added to a steakhouse rub or enjoyed in a cappuccino, the deep, rich flavor of espresso adds a depth of flavor to foods that's rich and satisfying.

2. Sun-dried tomatoes add earthy flavors to recipes. Whether they're incorporated into chicken roasts or meatloaf, chili or salad, the intense tomato flavor adds both texture and the perfect bite to holiday recipes.

3. Healthful and flavorful, cherries are sure to make your holiday meal sparkle. Whether tart or sweet, cherries are considered an antioxidant super food and will be present in many holiday treats this year. Watch for them to be matched with other fruits, meats and sides throughout the season.

4. Aged beef continues to make the holidays special. One taste trend that will never go out of holiday style: luscious, tender steaks and perfectly juicy roasts. The centerpiece of any holiday meal is still a great choice for wowing your most treasured friends - you name it, meats like Wagyu Kobe Beef, USDA Prime Chateaubriand and Roasted Steakhouse Rub Tenderloin Roast (some of Kansas City Steak's best-selling items) are holiday favorites every year. There's just something about taking a bite of a juicy, flavorful steak that makes your day memorable.

5. Don't forget the old-school favorites. Berkshire Pork, roasts of all kinds, grandma's special casserole - comfort foods extraordinaire. These foods burst with flavors of the season, rich with memories of years gone by.

When planning those special holiday meals, it's always good to have a handy guide to pair these new flavors with the perfect complementary sauces, sides and complementary wines.

Gourmet guides like the one that Kansas City Steak offers free to consumers from its website, provide quick, easy tips to add some holiday flair to your special gatherings. Many other companies also offer helpful tips and techniques to help you get the most extraordinary flavor for your food dollar - all while impressing your guests with your unique gourmet touches that are sure to make the moments memorable.

Whether you're craving more adventurous holiday menu choices this year or sticking with the more traditional flavors of the season, you're sure to find many treats to explore online and in your local grocery store. Start planning for your best holiday yet.
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