In this era of nostalgia and comfort food, these dishes are just waiting to return to Americans’ hearts and minds.
Who doesn’t like a good old flaming dessert? Once a hallmark of fancy restaurants offering tableside service, this dish was relegated to cruise ships before seeming to vanish entirely. The classic version — a scoop of ice cream on a bed of cake, covered in brûléed meringue and occasionally flambéed tableside — is still on the menu at Delmonico’s in New York, but it’s recently popped up on menus across the country as chefs and diners rediscover it. When pastry chefs go looking for something classic, they return to baked Alaska.
Cheese plates at parties are all well and good, especially in this era where some of the world’s best cheeses can be found at your local supermarket. But cheese balls — those giant hunks of spreadable cheese, usually a combination of cream cheese and Cheddar — are also a fun and incredibly versatile addition to any cheese plate. More and more party hosts are turning on to cheese balls, and they’ve even joined the bacon and sriracha revolution.
Flambéed desserts in general are ready for a big comeback, and cherries jubilee, made with cherries flamed with kirschwasser and served with a scoop of ice cream, is one of the best. This dish is rarely on dessert menus of late (most restaurants enjoy serving desserts of their own invention), but we predict it will be back soon.
Yelp/ Elaine C.
Chopped steak is an old-fashioned dish if there ever was one, similar to a hamburger patty but usually slightly more oblong and usually mixed with onions and other seasonings and topped with gravy. This is still a dish that you’re not likely to see on many (or any) menus outside of country kitchens, some steakhouse chains, and the occasional high-end steakhouse (It’s Peter Luger’s lunch special on Saturdays), but this is one dish that is possible to prepare very, very well, and once the luxury burger trend dies down, we’re looking at chopped steak as the next target.
This French dessert consists of a crêpe folded with a hot mixture of butter, sugar, orange juice and zest, and Grand Marnier, then flambéed. First popularized in Paris at the turn of the twentieth century (though perhaps invented in Monte Carlo), this classic and classy dish fits perfectly into a new, non-dessert mold: brunch. Once this item starts making its way onto brunch menus, there will be no stopping it.
Deviled eggs are the perfect finger food, and the possibilities for them are endless. They’ve been creeping onto more and more menus in recent years, and the reason? They’re an ideal bar food, and one which allows a chef to get creative and have a little fun. You can serve smoked salmon atop them, you can add bacon, and you can even swap out the yolks for guacamole for a healthy snack.
Yes, this classic dish is ready for its moment in the spotlight. After years of languishing in obscurity, served in a cloying and gloopy sauce when served at all, it’s finally starting to appear on menus again, including at the insanely popular Dirty French in New York. Duck is a protein that every restaurant likes to have on their menu, but it’s usually paired with cherries. Once chefs realize that orange works just as well (and that there’s a classic dish just begging to be cooked), the tide will continue to turn.
Who doesn’t like a vat of hot, melted cheese? Fondue’s reputation took a major hit in the 1970s when it was ruined by a few too many party hosts, but it’s regained popularity in recent years at fondue-centric restaurants, like New York’s Artisanal. Fondue still hasn’t made its way onto too many menus of traditional restaurants as an appetizer, but its time (as well as that of the related raclette) has definitely come.
There’s a big difference between a steak and a prime rib: a steak is an individual piece of meat that’s been cooked on both sides, and prime rib is a big slab of meat, cut from a rib roast at a perfect medium rare and doused with a flavorful jus. They’re a little tricky to add to menus because they can’t be cooked to order, but we predict that, as tableside service begins to rise in popularity, we’ll see more restaurants like San Francisco’s The House of Prime Rib, where whole ribs are rolled to each table and sliced to order.
This thick puréed soup, made from leeks, potatoes, onions, chicken stock, and sometimes cream, can be served hot or cold. One of the most popular soups of the ‘50s and ‘60s (it was apparently invented by French chef Louis Diat at the Ritz-Carlton Hotel in New York City, circa 1917), its popularity waned after a 1971 botulism outbreak from a can of Bon Vivant-brand vichyssoise. But that event is in the distant past, and while some French restaurants still serve it, it’s time for this delicious soup to make a comeback.