Asia’s tastiest food trends for 2018

Asian cuisine impacts the world

We already know just what an impact Asian cuisine has made on the rest of the world. One look at CNN Travel and you’ll discover that four of the top ten cuisines they consider to be the very best on the planet originate from our fine continent. As we prepare to bid a fond farewell to 2017 and look ahead to 2018, we thought now would be a good time to take stock and determine the next big food trends to come out of Asia that are expected to take the world by storm during the next 12 months.

Kimchi: delicious digestive qualitiesKimchi burger by Kimtaro, on Flickr"Kimchi burger" (CC BY 2.0) by Kimtaro

Food experts claim that so many Koreans live such a long and healthy life due in no small part to their diet. Anyone who’s anyone in Korea eats kimchi, these shredded vegetables that are brought to life when pickled with chillies, vinegar, garlic, salt and various other spices. Kimchi is fast becoming a great alternative to slaw both on burgers and as a genuine side dish. Now, many of these vendors work with food delivery service Deliveroo to transport these flavours of Korea across the Lion City and into the comfort of your own home, but if you're feeling adventurous, one of the best places to find kimchi and Korean-influenced dishes on the cheap is within Singapore’s many hawker centres.

Jackfruit: soon to be a savoury and sweet staple
Last year, National Geographic claimed jackfruit would become a popular meat substitute. For many years this fruit that is native to India and the national fruit of Bangladesh has been used in popular veggie dishes such as kathal biryanis and ghassi curries made with ground coconut and black chickpeas. To the human eye, jackfruit doesn’t look that appetizing. Its spiky, rugged exterior does nothing to its reputation. However, it’s got two clear uses. When it is somewhat ripe, the jackfruit’s starchy flesh is ideal for savoury dishes and once it has fully matured it turns as sweet as sugar, perfect for a cooling dessert.

Okonomiyaki: the finest Japanese comfort food


"Food Street" (CC BY-SA 2.0) by Nicolas Lannuzel

There is no doubt that Japanese ‘dude food’ is making a real impression worldwide. So-called dude food encapsulates Japan’s heartier dishes which tend to be found late at night in the izakaya bars of the big cities. Okonomiyaki is an Asian street food trend that’s guaranteed to go global in 2018. These simple savoury pancakes can be loaded with literally any fillings you like. Most Japanese households will enjoy these to use up leftover ingredients, creating fast comfort food at its best.

Ice cream roll-ups: for those with a sweet tooth
Finally, this growing food trend will really capture your imagination if you’ve got a particularly sweet tooth. We’ve got the people of Thailand to thank for ice cream roll-ups making their way east and west as a made-to-order sugary treat. Flavored sweet milk is laid onto a metal plate which cools the mixture well below freezing, before aerating it and scraping the mixture into firm rolls of icy goodness. The roll-ups are then placed in a cup holder and topped with whipped cream and any other sickly flavours – you’re only limited by your imagination here!

It’s always important to keep track of current and future food trends and it’s even better to see that Asia is very much leading the way in terms of delicious, healthy snacks consumed around the world.

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