76% of consumers said starters must look and sound amazing and would appeal more if they included healthy options. 25% of consumers in full service restaurants are looking for healthy options that still deliver on flavour.* For maximum appeal your starter and dessert menu should include indulgent AND healthy options.
Here are some tips on boosting flavour, adding excitement and making them healthier.
- Soups are a great low calorie alterative that you can make with virtually any ingredient. Top herbs, seeds, nuts, fresh vegetables or low fat yoghurt
- Salads are great starters, they help balance a meal, help towards 5-a-day and appeal to guests looking for a healthy option
- Braise broad beans and artichokes in bouillon for extra flavour and as a low fat alternative (bouillons contain salt so cooking instructions must be followed)
- When creating risottos use less butter but flavour the rice by simmering in a full flavoured low sodium stock (stocks contain salt so cooking instructions must be followed to avoid over salting)
- When serving a carpaccio of beef, add flavour and texture with thin slices of beetroot
- Excite guests by mixing tropical fruits with seafood. Try green papaya with shallots and prawns
- Use toasted wholegrain bread crumbs as a healthier topping to a favourite pudding
- Make a fruit dessert with some stewed fruit, fat free yoghurt. Add currants to the dessert for sweetness
- Use sweet fruit or raisins to flavour cakes and biscuits
- Sorbets are light, quick and can give a real flavour hit. Try creating a fruit sorbet with an extra unusual ingredient such as tea. Try Orange sorbet with chamomile, or mango sorbet with Earl Grey
- Offer puréed stewed fruit with custard or yoghurt
- Garnish your desserts with fresh fruit and mint leaves. It adds colour and appeal
*2009 American Express MarketBrief – March