It’s the season for yearly reviews and predictions, so I asked an esteemed panel of veggie/food enthusiasts from across North America to weigh in on two important veggie issues:
1. What was the breakout veggie of 2013?, and
2. What’s hot for 2014?
The results are shocking and will blow your mind — oh wait, this isn’t an Upworthy article. Read on for the wisdom and insight from some of my favourite people with their ears to the veggie patch.
The Breakout Veggie of 2013 is: A tie between Kale, Kimchi and Brussel sprouts. Brussel sprouts mainly because the DIY chips (all over Pinterest) taste way better than easy-to-burn-turns-to-ashes-in-my-mouth kale and because it makes you look extra farmer’s-markety carrying a giant stalk (or two) home.
Your 2014 Prediction? Eggplant and zucchini is where it is at this year, roasted or grilled these bitches are popping up on menus everywhere. That being said I’m all about grilled broccolini right now.. like eating trees.
michael robertson, vancouver
The Breakout Veggie of 2013 is: Kale. It was definitely prominent in 2011 and 2012 but became ubiquitous in 2013.
Your 2014 Prediction? I’m going to pick Hominy. It’s due for a resurgence and fits in with the back-to-basics cooking that’s on the rise.
The Breakout Veggie of 2013 is: I think kale is still hot in the veggie world. The bacon of vegetables, if you will.
Your 2014 Prediction? Chia seeds aren’t really a vegetable, but they’re blowing up. So are pomegranates, now that YouTube is showing everyone how to get all the bits out – but they’re a fruit. So… I’m gonna go with Brussels sprouts (especially in tacos).
michelle davies, vancouver
The Breakout Veggie of 2013 is: in my opinion…spaghetti squash
Your 2014 Prediction? brussel sprouts. little dudes have been around a long time, but i think they’re going to move from ‘thing you eat because you have to at Thanksgiving’ to ‘whoa, what delightful little creatures’
The Breakout Veggie of 2013 is: Kale. It was the green in your salads, the veggie in your smoothie and the potato in your chip. Everyone was eating it and could not get enough of it. Its an antioxidant, high in Vit A, C, K, iron, Calcium and is an anti-inflammatory food.
Your 2014 Prediction? People are saying cauliflower but I think it should be seaweed. Its a great source of Vitamin A, C, calcium and most importantly iodine. Iodine is needed to keep a strong healthy functioning thyroid which helps produce and regulate our hormones.
meghann shantz, vancouver
The Breakout Veggie of 2013 is: Kale! Definitely a 2013 standout. Kale came into its own and became a household name, showing up in everything from stirfries to smoothies. Dare I say it is the sundried tomato of its time?
Your 2014 Prediction? Jicama. Understated and versatile, jicama will win the hearts of those looking for not quite a potato and not quite an apple, but something right in the between. Too bad our ears are going to bleed every time someone tries to pronounce it.
The Breakout Veggie of 2013 is: Kale continued to have another strong year in 2013, showing up in chip, juice and smoothie form.
Your 2014 Prediction? I’m going to go ahead and say that 2014 is the year that collard greens finally get the recognition they deserve.
The Breakout Veggie of 2013 is: I hate to say it but Kale. Seriously, you can even get it in the baby variety pre-washed and packaged now. Black Kale is the new black, for sure.
Your 2014 Prediction? If Kale is the new black than Chard is the new Kale. Swiss Chard specifically. This dark leafy green has been a welcomed dinner guest on my Italian grandma’s table since I can remember but it’s only until recently that I’ve heard people who didn’t come directly from the motherland drop the ‘C’ word. I have a feeling this leafy green is about to get its 15 minutes.
janice chan, toronto
The Breakout Veggie of 2013 is: Beets! Different ways of preparing and using them in salads, sides and even dessert.
Your 2014 Prediction? purple cabbage (added texture and colour) and collard greens (wrap wrap baby & try out collard chips!). cauliflower is gonna be HOT too for 2014, says my chef co-worker
The Breakout Veggie of 2013 is: Kale. A couple of years ago, it was only found at the farmers markets or tucked away at the grocery store, but no one knew what to do with it. Hippies or foodies would eat it, but other than that, it wasn’t mainstream. In 2013, we started to see kale everywhere. It was on tv that it was king of the greens. People started making kale smoothies, kale salads. We saw baby kale salad varieties make an appearance with Earthbound Farms and Olivia Organics. And these weren’t just at Whole Foods, but in the produce aisles of “normal” mainstream grocery stores.
Your 2014 Prediction? Collard Greens. I even saw a sign the other day that said “Collard Greens is the new Kale”. I think most people in the US think of Southern Food dishes- collards and black eyed peas, collards and grits, but don’t cook much with them. I think in 2014 we are going to see collards be integrated into more recipes, and the powerful nutrition value of collard greens are going to be highlighted. We are going to realize how delicious this green is and how we can be a healthier form of ourselves by mixing up our greens and integrating this green into our diet.
Runner up: Brussels Sprouts. Brussels Sprouts have been HOT on the Boston scene. All the top restaurants seem to have a side or appetizer of brussels sprouts with bacon. I think this trend will continue as people replace their idea of brussels sprouts being bland and mushy when they taste these flavorful renditions of roasted or sauteed brussels sprouts accompanied by bacon.
2013′s breakout veggie by a compostslide was KALE, with 8 votes.
In 2014, my panel predicts (a tie, with 3 votes each) collard greens and Brussels sprouts to step into the spotlight.
Oh, and as for my answers: I chose cabbage as the breakout veggie of 2013. I really fell for it last year. For 2014, I chose kohlrabi! The momentum is definitely growing for this ‘turnip cabbage’ – confirmed by a sighting in the produce section of Walmart, which to me signifies a tipping point.
BRB, off to the store to buy some collard greens after I Google some recipes and also “what is hominy?”.
Here’s to a new year of trying new things and rediscovering old things!