Cronuts just latest fad

Last updated 13:49 19/09/2013
NOT TRENDY: Cronuts will have been forgotten about in three month's time.

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There has been a lot of media recently around the latest fad, the 'cronut', deep-fried pastry with toppings shaped like a donut. My view is it's a well-publicised food bite that would be slaughtered if a fast food giant had created them but put them into a nice few cafés or bakeries and bang, you have the latest food fad.

Bit of a spoiler alert for you here:

Cronut 500-700 calories (the original recipe is not known as it is has a copyright on it)

Burger King Whopper burger 641 calories

McDonalds Big Mac 550 calories

KFC Zinger Burger 472 calories

Wendy's Bacon Cheeseburger 358 calories

Now I am not saying they would have done a good job of them but the media coverage definitely wouldn't have been positive if one of the above fast food chains had introduced cronuts to New Zealand.

However it is reported as a 'trend' which is totally incorrect, I am dead against them just as I am dead against the whole of Auckland following each other with endless sliders, why couldn't we leave it as a couple of restaurants? Every time something new comes along so many establishments jump in and ruin the uniqueness of a product.

A great New Zealand chef was doing a cooking demonstration recently and I attended and he said the slider was "Auckland's signature dish and the rest of the country just eats burgers". It was a joke but at the same time its true. I would prefer a burger any day of the week.

However, I would have been happy with sliders had only Al Brown who brought them to the public eye in New Zealand (not invented them) had them in his restaurants rather than every other restaurant in the city. For years, I and many other chefs have been serving them on wedding menus, etc, so the slider certainly wasn't something new when it exploded - just again it was well-publicised.

The difference between food trends and food fads couldn't be larger. Food fad: "a temporary fashion followed enthusiastically by a group." Sliders, cronuts, lemon detox and many other diets. All will come and go.

Food trend however, "the general direction in which foods move," like small plates, fine dining, and quick-cook home meals for example are ways of life that has come around and been a part of the way we eat.

My issue is the reporting of things like the cronuts and how it takes over a whole city. It is 500 calories of wasted food. It's just deep-fried pastry! It doesn't take weeks of recipe development, just a keen eye for cutting shapes and a fryer full of oil to go with the extra bits you may add.

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So remember this in three months when the latest hybrid food fad hits the shelves and people are asking what a cronut was.

I know people might think I am just moaning but it worries me that in an age of obesity the positive over-reporting these morsels get worries me a little. I am not saying I am a health freak in fact far from it and this article is based on fads not healthy eating. Feel free to have your naughty treat but we certainly don't need more encouraging.

I would love to hear your constructive opinion on this and I am hoping this article will make you think twice when eating out and seeing well prepared food sitting next to those shiny fad-y wallet eaters!

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