Strengthening street food

“Over the last few years the rise in street food has been extraordinary and it is showing no signs of letting up. The recent trend has been due to a change in culture which has seen consumers move away from the formal dining which used to accompany the eating out experience.

“Typical street food vendors offer consumers a more relaxed dining experience. The removal of dining furniture, cutlery and the offering of faster service is in stark contrast to the more traditional setting. This less formal style of dining enables consumers to have greater freedom to socialise and develops a greater shared experience as the food becomes the topic of conversation.

“In reaction to this trend, bricks and mortar establishments have adapted their menus to coincide with the street food culture. The change in menus has resulted in bottom line improvements for those doing it well, as consumers continue to seek food which offers new and unique flavours from around the world.”

 A whole new world

“New flavour influences have begun to have an impact on caterers’ menus with European and North American dishes originally dominating. However, as consumers have searched for greater variety and tastes, the introduction of food cultures such as South American, North African and Far East Asian dishes have grown significantly in recent years.

“With the ever expanding array of styles on offer to consumers, caterers must choose the appropriate dishes to suit their establishment to maximise sales. Sourcing ingredients that can offer versatility and adapt well to different world flavours can be a great way of saving costs. A smaller amount of primary ingredients can allow for stronger themes to be carried throughout a menu; this results in a saving in costs as there are fewer ingredients to buy and saves time in the kitchen as fewer meal components need to be prepared and cooked.

“Frankfurters represent a versatile way of tapping into the street food theme. Toppings can be added to easily create themed dishes from around the world.  Dishes such as Mexican chilli, Indian dal and Japanese teriyaki chicken for example can be adapted to accompany a hotdog. The variety of different flavours are appealing to consumers but allow for caterers to offer the same high quality primary ingredient. A further benefit of using one central ingredient like a frankfurter is that lower skilled kitchen staff can easily access the street food trend without outlets investing in upskilling.”

A helping hand

“Premium products that offer consumers the highest quality can be hard to source, but Westlers beechwood smoked frankfurter provides caterers with a meat content of 90% one of the leading meat contents on the market. The Westlers frankfurter is ideal for adapting dishes to the street food trend as its authentic beechwood smoking complements a wide variety of worldly flavours.

“Due to street food’s popularity, caterers need to be proactive in seeking solutions which can help them cope with demand. With warmer weather and longer nights, the popularity of convenience food, such as hotdogs will increase and put added pressure on caterers to meet demand.

“Westlers offers caterers support packages that can help with the cooking of the frankfurters, helping to ease pressure on kitchen service. The packages which include roller grills, steamers and bain maries have the added benefit of offering operators the opportunity to reduce cooking time and keep the product at optimum temperature throughout service.”