Incorporating 2 of the decade’s top flavors into unique dishes

As we enter into a brand new year, there are a lot of new trends to embrace and flavors to try out. But that’s not to say that you can’t look back at the tastes and foods that made up the past decade, from 2000 to 2009. After all, they helped set the tone for the cuisine that we’re embracing today. The Food Channel has come out with a list of the most prominent flavors of the decade. By using these seasonings and food items, along with the skills you learned from culinary courses online, you can create unique dishes bursting with flavor.

Pomegranate is proving to be a dominant flavor in recent years. This superfruit was contained in more than 40 percent of beverage launches from June 2008 to May 2013, according to Food Business News. In 2006, the food industry saw more than 450 pomegranate-based products, including salad dressing and even shaving cream. Even Jelly belly came out with a pomegranate-flavored jelly bean. So what is it about this flavor that everyone can’t get enough of? Well its tart taste is certainly a factor, but it may be the fruit’s health benefits that rocketed it to popularity. It contains powerful antioxidants that have the ability to lower blood pressure and even reduce the risk of heart disease.

While this fruit is delicious plain, it can make for the perfect addition to any dish. Add some of its seeds to a salad to add the perfect amount of tart sweetness. You can even use it as a way to roast veggies. Coat carrots in a pomegranate molasses sauce to inject a unique flavor into the vegetable.

We have a funny feeling that this immensely popular flavor is here to stay. These days, you can find bacon-flavored anything, from bacon ice cream to bacon cupcakes. This also includes non-edible items like bacon soap, floss, lip balm, cat litter and bandages. Over the past decade, it went from being served with pancakes and eggs to morphing into various dishes and products.

If you want to incorporate this bacon trend into your own cooking, consider making your own homemade bacon spread that goes nicely on toast. Or if you need an appetizer to bring to your next get-together, make your own bacon guacamole by mashing two avocados with 1/2 cup chopped tomato and cilantro, along with 1/4 cup chopped onion and crumbled cooked bacon. Mix in 1/2 a minced jalapeno for a spicy kick, and some lime juice and salt.

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