Everywhere you looked this year, it seemed orange was the hot color in the potato world. That rust colored tuber, the sweet potato, was on a lot of top ten lists for 2010.
Mintel International, the Chicago-based trend-tracking research firm, chose the sweet potato as one of the six key U.S. flavor trends for this year. “Candied, fried, baked or boiled…sweet potatoes are one of the most diversely prepared vegetables, Mintel says. “Aside from being a delicious snack or side dish, they also will become known as the new functional food, as they are rich in dietary fiber, beta carotene and vitamins C and B6.”
At this summer’s Fancy Food Show, more than 2,400 domestic and international exhibitors from more than 80 countries unveiled 180,000 new specialty foods and beverages. A panel of food experts perused the packed exhibit hall to identify the top 5 food trends for 2010. At number 4 on the list is Squash, Pumpkin and Sweet Potato. The panel made special mention of two hot culinary products: Sweet Potato Butter and Sweet Potato Chocolate.
The Pillsbury people also identified sweet potatoes as a trendy food, noting the root vegetable’s wealth of antioxidants. On the Pillsbury web page, the company said that sweet potatoes bring Southern comfort for everything from chili to black bean burritos. Pillsbury suggests oven-roasted Sweet Potato Fries to entice kids to eat them, “while a dash of chili powder makes them decidedly adult-friendly.”
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