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January 29, 2019

The survey is perhaps a little late to the game but welcome nonetheless. At the end of last year and the beginning of January, the 5pm Food blog already made a stab at forecasting what will be on our plate in 2019. 

We also wrote a rather less frivolous blog looking at ways that a potential Brexit might affect the restaurant trade.

As you might expect, the Nisbets' survey underlines the fact that many diners seem to be swerving meat in favour of more veggie and vegan dishes.

Of course, restaurants in Scotland's Central Belt already reflect this. Scott Smith, chef patron at Edinburgh’s Fhior said, 'Although it has already started in smaller pockets, I think less protein is going to prevail more on menus. I think we should be eating better quality meat and fish and less of it.'

Smith believes we’ll see a rise in vegetable-led cooking with more stand-alone vegan restaurants opening in Edinburgh and beyond.

As part of this trend, the food professionals surveyed by Nisbets reckoned that seaweed (main pic from Wiki), jackfruit and aquafaba will all become a lot more familiar in 2019.

Foraging for dulse in Fife

Billy Boyter forages for seaweed at the beach in front of his Michelin-starred Fife restaurant, The Cellar in Anstruther.

He says, 'The quality of seaweed is better in winter because the water is colder. We use pepper dulse, which is phenomenal. You can dry the pepper dulse and put it into cures for fish or use it as a seasoning.'

The fibrous texture of jackfruit makes it popular as a meat substitute while aquafaba - the gloopy water found in a tin of chickpeas - can be used as a binder in plant-based cooking. Some mixologists use it in place of egg whites to create foams for their cocktails.


Perhaps more surprisingly, 50% of the people consulted in the Nisbets' survey believe that grow-your-own ingredients will be the biggest trend for 2019.

We're going to manfully resist the temptation to make jibes about grow-your-own-food being the only viable post-Brexit option.

Anyway, the chefs surveyed plan on growing their own herbs, micro herbs and salad leaves.

Naturally, Scotland's chefs are at the head of the pack and Fred Berkmiller of l'escargots restaurants and Neil Forbes of Café St Honoré have been growing their own leaves and much more for quite some time.