Southeast Asian street food is having a moment. The National Restaurant Association’s 2017 Culinary Forecast placed street food-inspired dishes second on its list of top 20 food trends, and stars like Gwyneth Paltrow and Anthony Bourdain have professed their love for the flavorful cuisine. While fertilized duck eggs and crunchy silkworms may be a little too authentic for your attendees, the trend is surprisingly easy to incorporate into your F&B game plan.
“Southeast Asian foods have a broad appeal,” says Samantha Brown, catering sales manager for San Francisco’s Off the Grid Catering, and a former resident of the region. “Southeast Asian cuisines are known for their sauces (chili, peanut, sambal and more) that can add sweetness or spice to each diner’s taste,” adds Brown on how to increase appeal for hesitant attendees.
Another fan of the craze is Brooklyn-based catering and event management company Naturally Delicious, which created a menu devoted entirely to Asian street food. Ask for a curry bar loaded with green coconut, Massaman chicken and Malaysian vegetable curries or a noodle bar serving Singapore-style noodles and vegetarian pad Thai—or both. It’s safe to say this trend isn’t going anywhere anytime soon.
Photo credit: Karen Wise