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Top Street Food Trends To Look Out For This Year

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Once the prevail of bleary-eyed late-night revellers on a come-down, street food has seen an incredible surge in popularity in recent years. Street food stalls and vans are fast becoming destinations in themselves and the go-to choice for the discerning and adventurous epicurean. No self-respecting town or city is without a street food market or two, and that late-night pizza could quite easily be coming from a van with its own built-in wood-fired oven.

We’ve delved deep in to the dynamic world of outdoor eating and discovered the top street food trends to look out for this year.

Dirty Vegan

With Veganuary making as much of an impact on the public conscience this year as Movember, it’s clear that veganism is very much on the rise. But does an ethical diet necessarily have to be a healthy one? One cannot live on Buddha bowls alone. Whether Deliciously Ella likes it or not we all need some artery-clogging decadence once in a while, and the burgeoning vegan scene is diversifying to meet demand. Jackfruit – which resembles pulled pork – is fast becoming a mainstay, while seitan is the chicken substitute du jour. When deep-fried southern-style, it fills that bargain bucket-sized hole in a vegan’s life. But it’s not all meat substitution; cauliflower, in an act of defiance, has shed its cheesy typecasting to become the unlikely cool-kid of the deep-fried veg scene, leading the pack in a brave new world of edgy veg.

Hawaiian food

No, we’re not talking about Hula Hoops. Hawaii has a bounty of food offerings that are slowly making their way to these shores. Poke has already found its way into the hearts of many, with its fishy, East Asian-inspired flavours appealing to those eager to branch out from sushi and ceviche. Comprising raw fish typically mixed with fresh onion, pickles, sushi rice and soy/sesame marinade all served in a bowl, poke is delicious, healthy, and paving the way for more sun-soaked island treats. Be on the lookout for fish tacos bursting with coriander and topped with spicy mayonnaise. And if you’re in luck a waft of fragrant teriyaki and grilled meat could lead you to huli huli chicken, decadently glazed in sweetened soy sauce and carefully turned, in the spirit of hula, to reach caramelised perfection.

Regional Mexican

Mexican food has been at the forefront of the street food revolution, playing its part in the avocado takeover. But it’s no longer just about tacos. Mexico is a country stretching from northern deserts to southern jungles and we’re beginning to see the emergence of the extraordinary culinary diversity of its 31 states. Oaxacan cuisine, already making waves in the UK, is on a roll. Expect to see dishes like tamales alongside the infamous bitter, spicy-sweet sauce, mole, and for the adventurous, chapulines – fried grasshopers flavoured with salt, lime and garlic. Viva la revolución!

South African

South African food is not for the faint-hearted. If you like to eat a lot of roasted red meat and a lot of bread then you’re in for a treat. If that all sounds like a bit much then perhaps a cup of soothing rooibos should suffice. Boerewors – a thick sausage of beef and pork, flavoured with coriander – is the herald of the hot dog renaissance we’ve been waiting for, especially when barbecued (or braaied) till succulent, smoky and crisp. Bunny chow, a hollowed out loaf of bread filled with Durban curry is carb-nirvana. At its best, fragrant, spicy and a tad too filling, it’ll make you yearn for more meals with edible bowls. Less likely to catch on is walkie-talkie: seasoned, boiled and grilled chicken’s head and feet. To fans it’s a crispy delicacy, to others it’s a little shop of horrors. A safer bet is Gatsby – a foot long sub, quartered for sharing, overflowing with chips, meat and piri-piri sauce or achar pickle; it’s a street food jackpot.

Marcus Reed

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