Consumers have no shortage of options when it comes to choosing where they dine. To drive traffic, sales and repeat business, operators need a way to make their restaurant stand out—and bringing a global flair to standby menu items and LTOs could be just the way to do it.
The majority of consumers are looking for something new and exciting when they walk through the restaurant doors: Two-thirds of consumers say they are interested in trying new flavors, and 61% say they are very likely to return and repeat their order if they try and like a new flavor, according to Technomic’s 2019 Flavor Consumer Trend Report.
The key is creating global dishes that are approachable—something familiar with a twist. Try a vegetarian variation on the classic Vietnamese sub sandwich, the banh mi, by substituting barbecued-style portobello mushrooms that will satisfy patrons seeking more plant-based options. Daikon radish is a rising star in sandwiches, according to Technomic’s 2020 Sandwich Consumer Trend Report, which also predicts tropical fruit flavors will pop on menus. Grilled Portobello Mushroom and Blackberry Sriracha Banh Mi incorporates both—pleasing both the adventure-seekers and those looking for something familiar at the same time.
While portobellos grilled char siu-style add meaty heft to this hearty sandwich and pickled carrots and trendy daikon add crunch, it’s the sweet and sour mango and the blackberry sriracha that really set this sandwich apart. To assemble the banh mi, split a fresh six-inch French baguette, fill with a cup of grilled portobellos, top with a quarter cup of sweet and sour mango, a quarter cup of pickled carrots, four jalapeno slices, a few tablespoons of julienned daikon and sprinkle with a tablespoon of cilantro leaves. For a sweet and spicy accent, drizzle with a couple tablespoons of blackberry sriracha. For the full recipe, click here.
Operators will discover that DOLE Chef-Ready Cuts and DOLE Chef Ready Frozen Fruit Purées can add interest to nearly every menu category. Use DOLE Chef-Ready Cuts, available in seven fruit varieties, to add a sweet complement to savory tacos and salads or as an easy topper for desserts. DOLE Chef Ready Frozen Fruit Purées, in four fruit flavors, star in smoothies, tiki cocktails and mocktails or as a component in dressings and sauces. Find more inspiration and recipes at dolefoodservice.com.
This post is sponsored by Dole Packaged Foods