I cook to plate you know. It can't be that surprising or secret. If I didn't have a blog I would still plate, but I certainly wouldn't be grating up beets for no reason other than to burst crimson next to my jalapeno corn gravy and thus discover yet one more thing that tastes surprising and experimental next to eachother, expanding my culinary horizons in just one more left field direction, hurray!
Thursday, October 15, 2009
Anyway, it's fairly easy.... and I'm no expert or teacher, but some things I've noticed are...
* Put the most attractive food in the front, or the most substantial food in the middle. Spiral outwards from that in any direction that makes sense to your eye. Or build a fort. Or write your name.
* Big White Plates! Or at least keep an eye on complimentary colours. Blue is usually an unappetizing no-no for dishes.
* Heavy sauces are best on top of food, while thin sauces are better underneath. Then again, break that rule, too.
* Garnish sparingly, and only with stuff that tastes good, of course. Of course.
* Get inspired by your favourite abstract art, or any art at all.
* Mix up the textures, too! And keep things clean - if things spill, wipe it up with a damp cloth all pro-like. Oh, and nuking things in the microwave tends to bubble over like a cauldron of mess-messy-mess, so you might want to transfer your reheated black bean soup to a new posh bowl after it's long-awaited (6 minutes?!) warmup.
* If you're serving lots of people, I'm not really one for plating in that case, BUT it's definitely nice, and I'll go as far as to say mandatory to have multiple bowls of kaleidoscopic garnishes and sprinklins for the adding at the table. [toasted seeds, pomegranate arils, fresh herbs, salsas, extra sauces, ground up nuts, fake parm, sliced fruit, sprouts, chutneys, plastic figurines, rainbow sprinkles, avocado, olives, fancy salts, etc, etc.... ]. Guests will be flabbergasted and amused, and later if you break out the fingerpaints they won't be side-winded by the progression.
Some excellent tips about regular plates, and trays, too.
Startcooking.com recommends being odd.
So does CHOW, but they're both talking about numbers. ;)