The Free Press, Mankato, MN

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December 31, 2013

Graff: A grocery list of 2014 food trends

Q: I always like trying new foods and dishes. What are some of the new food trends for 2014?

A: With the new year here, it is time to look ahead to the fresh dishes and foods we can expect over the next 12 months. Here are my predictions.

Lemon: An often forgotten-about addition to meals, lemon has traditionally been used to brighten sauces and dressings. This year, lemon will be stepping into the spotlight. Look for it as a key flavor in entrees, side dishes and salads as well as desserts.

Tea: Look for tea to start nudging out coffee as the morning beverage of choice. This antioxidant-rich leaf will also start popping up in foods and recipes from dinner to dessert.

Nuts: Not just for snacking anymore, nuts and seeds are popping up in the dairy aisle and next to jelly. Almond milk, coconut yogurt and sunflower butter will all be making their appearances in drinks, yogurts, sauces and sandwiches.

Poaching and steaming: Healthy cooking techniques are at the forefront this year. Typically thought of as supremely bland, poached and steamed foods will get a flavor kick from wine, tea, beer and smoky liquids.

Semi-homemade: People are busy, but don’t want to sacrifice flavor and health. Convenient, frozen meals that use gourmet ingredients but keep an eye on health will be all the rage among busy families and singles alike.

Convenience shopping: Online grocery ordering will pick up as families choose to do their shopping from home. You can now make your meal plan, organize your list and order your groceries to be picked up or delivered, all from the comfort of your own home. (Try it out at www.hy-vee.com).

Local: Look for more locally raised meats and locally grown produce this year as consumers are focused on fresh and food’s environmental impact.

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