Are you eating healthier and more nutritious foods than you used to? The truth is we all are, and there is simply no room for fat chefs these days!
Leading chefs have a huge influence on food trends – regarding what we cook at home, what we go to dinner for and what we feed our families.
Back in the day, the stereo typical image of a chef was an overweight bloke with a tall hat, a cigarette in hand and a filthy apron.
So what’s changed?
Modern leading restaurants are high paced, stressful and require a certain level of fitness and mental stability to survive. Chefs are not stood around dipping their spoons in the soup and stuffing their faces with crème brulee anymore.
Think of it as an continually evolving and healthy food trend. As a society we are much more aware of our health and general well being. There has been a dramatic change in the food we eat and the way it is cooked. This is reflected in leading restaurants, TV cooking shows and the food on our tables.
If you take an old French cooking bible, recipes are full of methods requiring; double cream, butter, duck fat, foie gras and bone marrow.
Take a copy of Rene Redzepis latest book and the list of ingredients couldn’t be more different; moss, live ants, native herbs, plants and flowers.
(Rene Redzepi, Head Chef of Noma, vote No1 restaurant in the world)
For the last decade there has been a movement of leading chefs that have taken the complexities of simple ingredients and showcased them in a new and exciting manor. Demonstrated in such a way that it has changed the way we eat in a restaurant, influenced our cooking at home and our approach to healthy foods.
Instead of replicating age old methods, chefs are now trying to achieve the most accurate possible perception of an ingredient. Cooking like this is more of an art form, requiring an intricate palate and a wide knowledge of flavour.
Not long ago rich creamy purees, copious amounts of butter and deep fryers would rule the roost. Whereas now milk based sauces, light oil dressings, pickles, ferments and garden vegetables are left to do the talking.
It’s a fantastic approach to food, it endorses lively vibrant cooking and educates us about ingredients and the properties they have to offer. ‘At Your Table’ Chefs believe in this concept, move with the times and demonstrate up to the moment bespoke menus to match these trends.
Now don’t get me wrong – a large hunk of grilled red meat, a rich sticky sauce and a side of creamy potato gratin is down right delicious. I would happily devour a double serving of indulgent bread and butter pudding with plenty of crème anglaise and not feel guilty.
There is plenty of space for the old school classics and they will not be forgotten but there is something satisfying about eating well and maintaining a healthy diet. So much so that it has caught on in a big way!
A slow cooked fillet steak with quinoa, roasted eschallots, green mustard, watercress and walnuts offers a much cleaner plate than its predecessor. A dessert of Spice roasted pineapple with hung coconut labne, activated pistachios and puffed black rice is a much cleaner and fresher alternative to a heavy cream based pudding.
This is a trend where healthy cooking does not need to compromise flavour, one where we can focus on natural flavours, learn to emphasise the quality of an ingredient and feel good in doing so.
Do you have any delicious healthy recipes you would like to share?
Please feel free to leave a comment below,