Real or Fake? Which of These 12 Kid Friendly Foodie Trends Do You Believe?Sunny Chanel
I have a confession, I am a recovering foodie.
There was the time I would spend four hours in line for the chance to dine at Cibrèo in Florence, Italy. A time where I would trek to a far-flung beach in Bali to dine on fresh caught seafood that had been grilled to perfection. A time when I would lead a group of people on a wild goose chase in New York City to find a specific Italian bakery that had the BEST cookies (we finally found it after about two hours of walking). And it wasn’t just dining out where my foodie inclinations would rule; I would also invest in the best organic first press virgin olive oil from Italy, the finest pink Himalayan sea salt money could buy and I would go across town to buy freshly ground beef, chops and steaks from my favorite meat purveyor (organic and local, of course) in order to prepare dishes from my large cookbook collection (from Julia Child’s Mastering the Art of French Cooking to Thomas Kellar’s Bouchon).
But that was then. This is now. My culinary world went through a massive upheaval on January 2nd, 2006 the day my daughter was born. I now buy food that is not only more convenient to obtain, that is more affordable, but that is also appealing to a younger pallet. And if you have children, then you know that eating out at fancy restaurants becomes a thing of the past, not just for the hassle of making sure your kids behave, but for the kinds of foods that finer dining establishments offer up. But these days, the simple is becoming more refined. The classics are getting a new twist. And chefs everywhere are embracing kid-friendly favorites and making them into highfalutin food trends.
I’ve put together a collection of some of these recent trends, plus a couple that don’t exist…yet. Which ones are real? Which ones are fake?
Check them out here!
12 Kid-Friendly Food Trends 1 of 13
Which ones are real, which ones are fake?
Real or Fake? The High End Marshmallow 2 of 13
Years ago I thought I was sooooo cutting edge by making my own homemade marshmallows. Friends and relatives thought I had perhaps hit the bottle of cooking sherry one too many times, but as it turns out, it would soon become a "thing."
The artisan marshmallow has its own cult following from Plush Puffs who creates flavored marshmallows like pumpkin pie marshmallows to lemony meringue marshallows and Etsy marshmallow maker Sweet Jumbles who makes them with flavors like Maple Bacon. But my personal favorite is Recchiuti's classic artisan marshmallows that are "handmade using traditional French techniques." Although they are expensive ($14 for 18 marshmallows), they are amazing.
Photo Source: Recchiuti/ Available here
Fake or Real: The PBJ Restaurant 3 of 13
One of the easiest and most simple meals we can make our kids is a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, the commonly known classic PB & J (that is if you children are free of nut allergies). But if you think you know how to make a killer PB & J, I think the chefs behind PBJ's Grilled in Portland, Oregon can do it better.
They have dedicated their lives to creating PB & J masterpieces with such concoctions as The Good Morning (challah French toast, PBJ's peanut butter, apple wood smoked bacon, 100% maple syrup and house made blueberry jam) and the Spicy Thai (challah bread, PBJ's peanut butter Sriracha, fresh basil, curry and orange marmalade). And yes, they will make a classic just peanut butter and jelly version if you'd like.
You can check out more of PBJ's Grilled selection right here.
Photo Source: PBJ's Grilled
Fake or Real: The $50 Grilled Cheese Sandwich 4 of 13
If you are dying to try a grilled cheese sandwich that costs $50, I'm sorry to inform you that your chance is gone. But if you dined at the New York City hot spot Gilt (not to be confused with the online discount site), you had the option to try their truffled grilled cheese sandwich from Gilt's chef Chris Lee, which even had a shout out on the show Gossip Girl.
But there are other options for a high-end grill cheese sandwich experience (that's not as expensive). Here in my town of San Francisco we have two options - The Melt (with their Mac Daddy - a mac and cheese, grilled cheese hybrid) and The American Grilled Cheese Kitchen (with their Breakfast Popper featuring local chÃ¨vre, Monterey jack, apricot-jalapeÃ±o relish, and bacon).
Photo Source: The American Grilled Cheese Kitchen
Fake or Real: The $120 Plate of Mac & Cheese 5 of 13
Let's be real, an excellent plate of Mac and Cheese is worth its weight in gold, not just to kids but to adults. There is a reason why it tops the list of ultimate comfort foods and the Santa Monica Michelin-starred French restaurant MÃ©lisse makes the ultimate Mac and Cheese, at least we'd ASSUME it's the "ultimate" since it costs a whopping $120.
This Mac and Cheese, it ain't comin' from no box. This is a dish of fresh Tagliatelle with "grated white truffles, parmesan, brown butter truffle froth." Think about how many boxes of Kraft Macaroni and Cheese you could buy for the same $120! You could feed an entire class of hungry kids for that price.
Photo Source: Wiki Commons/Antilived
Fake or Real: The $4 Piece of Toast 6 of 13
Toast is one of the simplest things you can make; you put bread in a toaster, pull down on the handle, wait for the toast to pop up, smear butter on it, and then you are done. Seriously easy. So what's up with the $4 slice of toast? This is a trend that is gaining momentum in San Francisco with mixed reviews. While some MUST be embracing the $4 piece of toast since it is being made and marketed others see it as a sign of the apocalypse (okay, maybe not apocalypse but for sure a issue with our society) a topic which is brought up in VentureBeat's piece "$4 toast: Why the tech industry is ruining San Francisco." One thing for sure, if you are paying $4 for a piece of toast, it better be the best piece of toast you have EVER eaten.
Photo Source: Wiki Commons
Fake or Real: The Gourmet Pop-Tart 7 of 13
I love, love, love a PopTart. But when I grab a box of them from the shelf of my local Safeway and throw them into my cart, I get a huge pang of mom guilt. There is no way I can justify having them in the house without letting my kid have one too, that would be just like soooo mean and that would totally open up yet another mom guilt wound. But I am one of those moms who doesn't feed her child things like PopTarts. Yeah, one of those.
The classic PopTart by Kelloggs has (in just one Starwberry pastry) 15 grams of sugar, 1.5 grams of saturated fat, corn syrup AND high fructose corn syrup, along with oodles of other ingredients to add to the color and taste.
But some chefs totally know that us health-conscious adults are jonesing for an old school PopTart like the good people at San Francisco's Foreign Cinema. For years they have been making their own version of the delicious morning treat for their weekend brunch service. An organic incarnation with fruits like huckleberry or their current flavors of pineapple-mango or pear.
Photo Source: Yelp
Fake or Real: Artisan Ants on a Log 8 of 13
Imagine this; heirloom celery room cut into thin strips with a hand churned organic Pistachio butter finished with dried currants. Couldn't you totally see a gourmet spin on the kid classic Ants on a Log? Keep an eye out for it, I have a feeling we could see this soon!
Photo Source: WikiCommons
Fake or Real: High End Twinkies 9 of 13
Do you remember the great Twinkie famine of 2013? Oh, we ALL do. In early part of the year, Twinkie's maker Hostess Brands went bankrupt and suddenly the Twinkie was head line news.
And in their absence, chefs felt the need and set out to fill the void of a Twinkie-less world, a worthy goal for sure. In New York City, the Stanton Social created their $4 signature Red Velvet Twinkie which is "infused with cream cheese filling and topped with a dollop of whipped cream," and Empire Cakes created their own spin with a "Passion Fruit Snack Cake, featuring vanilla cake with passion fruit curd filling, dipped in Callebaut white chocolate."
But if you still yearn for the classic mass produced Twinkie, you are in luck. Apollo Global Management and Metropoulos & Co. bought the Twinkie brand and brought the popular snack cake back to the shelves, but you know the gourmet spin-offs will continue!Photo Source: Wiki Commons
Real or Fake: The $10 Hard-Boiled Egg 10 of 13
Now, a perfectly cooked hard boiled egg is so simple yet can be so delicious. And while I have yet to personally see the high-end hard-boiled egg I would totally believe it if I saw it. An enterprising chef could market hard-boiled quail eggs, hard-boiled pheasant eggs, or hard-boiled goose eggs with a sprinkle Black Truffle Salt.
Photo Source: Wiki Commons
Real or Fake: The Gourmet Rice Krispie Store 11 of 13
You know what residents of New York City's Upper West Side need? A store whose main inventory consists of only high-end Rice Krispie treats. And that is just what the newly opened Treat House provides. They have such flavors as Caramel Sea Salt, Dark Chocolate Chili and Coconut Chocolate Chip. Oh, and if you have a love for the classic Rice Krispie treat and would love one with a more gourmet spin, the Treat House has mail order so the treats can be sent right to your door.
Photo Source: Treat House/ Instagram
Real or Fake: The Cotton Candy Food Truck 12 of 13
Unless you missed the memo, food trucks are big, like crazy big. And they offer a whole slew of culinary delights from Kung Fu Tacos (who make Asian inspired tacos) to the CrÃ¨me Brulee Cart (who makes, you guessed it, CrÃ¨me Brulee). And now in San Francisco there is a new addition to the mobile food circuit Sugar and Spun, who specialize in highfalutin cotton candy. They, as Daily Candy notes, make "organic, raw sugar-infused candy floss enhanced with freeze-dried toppings and powders; mostly vegan and free of artificial colors and sweeteners." They create cotton candy with flavors like Peanut Butter & Jelly, Bananas & Nutella, and Peppermint Cookies & Cream. This is not your mamma's county fair cotton candy.
Photo Source: Sugar and Spun Facebook Page
Real or Fake: The Artisan Gummy Bear 13 of 13
Initially, I totally thought this would be one of the FAKE ones, but then I found the artisan gourmet gummy bear maker Sugarfina. They create their own little bears with flavors "plucked from the farmer's market" like, "Bing Cherry, Strawberry, Grapefruit, Clementine, Meyer Lemon, Mango, Pineapple, Key Lime, Green Apple, Watermelon, Blue Raspberry, and Concord Grape." Meyer lemon gummy bears? Yes, please.
Photo Source: Sugarfina