Last week I wrote about hybrid marketing. Today, given I am in the food business, I thought it would be a good time to post a new trend, hybrid food, also referred to as Frankenfood
I found the word Frankenfood in Urban Dictionary, an online dictionary that was originally established back in 1999 that primarily defines cultural slang (words or phrases) not typically found in standard dictionaries. Urban Dictionary defines Frankenfood as “revolutionary culinary creations that mash up original and unexpected food combinations and ingredients, resulting in delicious dishes or awful misses.” Some Frankenfood that have made headlines this past year you might be familiar with are Cronuts, ramen burgers, Mac & cheese burgers and dessert pizzas. Back in April, Oreo launched a marketing movement called Snack Hacks challenging celebrity chefs/food innovators to develop new ways for consumers to enjoy their product. Consequently the term “food hacking” was born.
Is hybrid food a passing fad or future trend? Based on what I have read and observed, especially with the increased popularity of food trucks in America, hybrid food (a.k.a. Frankenfood) and food hacking is part of our overall new food culture. Recently I read an article on The Salt, NPR’s online food news feed about artisanal ramen noodles. Instant ramen has become a college staple for either quick fuel or a snack/budget meal (approximately 30 cents per package). Now students are getting creative and hacking culinary creations like ramen noodle grilled cheese sandwiches, ramen frittatas filled with bacon, cheese and tomatoes, ramen used in lieu of a bowl for ice cream smothered in chocolate syrup, etc.
Have you experienced a Frankenfood surprise creation yet?