New American cuisine has brought us a global fusion of cooking techniques and ingredient combinations, and inspired even more new ideas, including what’s known as New Nordic cuisine. Its ideology is based on cooking strictly with ingredients that are grown or foraged in the Nordic regions where they will be prepared and consumed. In principle, New Nordic Cuisine embraces traditional regional foods and encourages artisanal production – a primary theme in most New American cuisine as well.
Spring is a great time to follow the ideology of New Nordic Cuisine here in the Pacific Northwest, because of all of the springtime bounty coming in! Here at LloydMartin, we’re excited about fresh wild greens, like wild California leeks, miner’s lettuce, and ramps. Other wonderful springtime produce that we’re looking forward to include morels from Michigan, wild sorrel, maple blossoms, elder flower blossoms, wild garlic, wild ginger, nettles, salmon blossoms and more!
Denmark’s most famous food personality, Claus Meyer, was the chief architect of the “Manifesto for the New Nordic Cuisine“, published in 2004. A 2012 article in SoShiok featured Meyer, mentioning his notoriety as “a culinary maverick for being the driving force behind the New Nordic food movement that has enraptured gourmands worldwide.”
“For me, it was all about growing awareness of the potential of doing things in a better way, for the benefit of us all,” Meyer said in a special edition of The Nordic Way magazine, last March. “There might well be ten thousand different ways of implementing the New Nordic Cuisine. The movement and the ideology doesn’t say anything about how to cook the food.”
Furthermore, New Nordic Cuisine is something that can be done anywhere in the world. Chefs like Sam Crannell often apply the same tactics of sourcing ingredients from regional purveyors and showcasing artisan food products. With spring well on its way, the regionally-sourced bounty makes it easier and more fun to invoke New Nordic philosophy into dishes at LloydMartin.
According to Chef Meyer, “This new kitchen ideology is not at declaration of war against Thai food, Mexican mole or sushi. It is not at crusade against pizza. We don’t feel any affinity with nationalistic ideas. We just think that food from our region deserves to have a voice in the choir of the world’s other great cuisines.”
New American cuisine is about the search for some flavor profile or technique that no one has ever had before. New Nordic Cuisine takes this search to a new level, by inspiring creativity for artisan food production and encouraging new ways to use local ingredients.
“Our understanding of food culture and its impact on us and the next generations has simply risen to a new level where we take better decisions,” Meyer has said. “Very soon, it will just be seen as a vehicle that has taken us to a new level of consciousness. It will slowly become a part of our educational system, how we teach our children about food, agriculture and cooking.”
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