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Veg-Centric with Ancient Grains: Plate up Profit Fusing Two Macrotrends

Michael Holleman (Director of Culinary Development & Marketing, InHarvest, Inc.)

Jason Ziobrowski, CEC (Corporate Chef, InHarvest, Inc.)

Location: R06

Date: Monday, February 25

Time: 1:30pm - 2:30pm

Pass Type: Catersource Conference & Tradeshow, Catersource Connect - Get your pass now!

Track: Food & Beverage, Trends & Design

Vault Recording: TBD

Audience Level: All

"Veg-centricity" on menus begins its fifth year in 2019, making it a macrotrend in the food marketplace. What does that mean? Caterers and chefs are taking fresh vegetables and, sometimes, fruits, and bringing them to the center of the plate. Yet "veg-centric" does not have to mean vegan or vegetarian. Indeed, in veg-centric dishes, meat and seafood proteins are treated more as garnishes or even condiments to enhance a dish's umami power—something plant-based proteins can't do. Think of veg-centricity as appealing to the omnivore in most of us.

And ancient whole grains such as black rice, black barley, quinoa, sorghum, greenwheat freekeh, sprouted red rice and more play into the veg-centric movement exceedingly well—by kicking up flavor, mouthfeel and health-promoting fiber while incorporating additional nutrients and minerals. What's more, whole grains greatly enhance the visual appeal of a dish, yielding more value-added menu interest (which can warrant a higher price).

Two chefs and experts "ingrained" in the world of whole grains will demonstrate via cooking and tasting how the veg-centricity AND ancient-grains trends, when their potentials are fused, are a sure-fire way to please customers of every generation (including up-and-coming Gen Z) and boost the bottom line.