Christine Couvelier, a food trend watcher based in Victoria, says that kebabs and fondue both fall under the trends of food on a stick and small bites with big flavour.
To be on trend, here are a couple of recipes to try.
Thai Shrimp and Mango Kebabs
These sweet and spicy kebabs are easy to prepare and are perfect for entertaining. You can use orange juice instead of the liqueur, if desired.
4 large bamboo skewers
50 ml (1/4 cup) water
50 ml (1/4 cup) rice vinegar
30 ml (2 tbsp) granulated sugar
50 ml (1/4 cup) Alize Gold Passion liqueur, Cointreau or triple sec
30 ml (2 tbsp) fresh lime juice
1 garlic clove, minced
2 ml (1/2 tsp) hot pepper flakes
12 jumbo shrimp (11 to 15 count), deveined and peeled
2 semi-ripe mangoes, peeled and each cut into 8 bite-size pieces
Soak skewers in warm water for 30 minutes to prevent scorching on the grill.
In a small saucepan over medium, heat water, vinegar and sugar until sugar dissolves. Remove from heat and let cool. Add liqueur, lime juice, garlic and pepper flakes.
Assemble 3 shrimp and 4 mango pieces on each skewer, alternating between fruit and shrimp. Arrange in a single layer in a baking dish and pour marinade over top. Refrigerate for 30 minutes, turning once.
Heat grill to medium-high. Place kebabs on grill, close lid and cook for 3 minutes per side or until shrimp are bright pink and firm. Be careful not to overcook.
Makes 4 servings.
Source: "Cooking With Booze" by Ryan Jennings and David Steele (Whitecap Books, 2006).
Swiss-German Milk Chocolate Fondue
No one makes chocolate the way the Swiss and Germans do, and it is from this tradition that this deliciously simple fondue dessert idea has come. It can be glamorized with the addition of a liqueur or simply served over ice cream as a sauce. Here fresh fruit is featured.
250 ml (1 cup) hot milk
180 g (6 oz) semi-sweet chocolate chips
30 ml (2 tbsp) coffee liqueur (optional)
In a blender container, place hot milk, chocolate chips and liqueur, if using. Cover and blend at medium speed for about 1 minute or until smooth. Pour sauce into small pot and keep warm over a candle flame.
Serve with pieces of fresh fruit (strawberries, melon balls, mandarin orange sections, nectarines, etc.), cubes of pound cake and plain cookies for dipping.
Makes about 500 ml (2 cups) sauce, enough for 8 to 10 servings.
Source: Dairy Farmers of Canada, www.dairygoodness.ca.