Basic Food Styling / Food Plating (Part 2 of 2)

On to the practical side of the Basic Food Plating Workshop; we started the second day with the preparation and cooking of the food that we were assigned to plate. Yes, real food it was! Contrary to the usual food styling activity (specifically in photo shoots) where artificial stuffs are used to come up with inviting food shots, we styled nothing but real food. All participants were divided into teams of two members and each team was assigned a particular dish to cook and plate. We were given an hour to conceptualize, strategize and finish our work. It's an amateur Iron Chef show, that's how I would depict the fastest one hour of our lives as "cook and artist" at the same time. And heaven it was, seeing our creations oozing with culinary stimuli in all angles of the plate.

The banner photo in this article is of course, my team's work. We were assigned to cook and plate Pancit Canton Gambas. The second photo on top is the original food style that we made. After some critics and suggestions it was modified as shown in the first photo above. The plate was re-arranged in such a way that the shrimps didn't look too monotonous and well placed. Aside from the chopped spring onions, a slightly bigger cut of it was used as additional garnish on top of the shrimps to highlight the seafood other than the noodles. Also, the green color of the spring onions cut the all orange - brownish shade of the dish. The geometric contrast between the plate and the noodles worked harmoniously. We also dust the sides of the plate with a little paprika to extend the color onto the plate. But we made sure we left some space on it just so it can still be handled comfortably by the one who will consume it.
The second dish is Beef Sukiyaki. The best focal point of this food presentation is the arrangement of all the ingredients used. There's a good contrast of color and each ingredient managed to come out on its own. The visible red color from the beef strips gives off that impression of being cooked just right (medium rare).

This is Spamkatsu. This dish is a classic example of turning canned goods into gourmet food. Instead of usually presenting the fried spam slices on top of the dry noodles, this team made a difference by serving it on one side of the plate. The spam slices are nicely arranged one on top of the other garnished with a twisted lemon and parsley. It's also served Filipino style by adding some sauce and buttered bread on the side. Truly, this dish gave a life to an ordinary canned product. This is one great breakfast or snack idea for kids that moms should never pass out in preparing.

Fried Thai Spring Rolls. This is the simplest but equally appetizing food presentation for me. The idea of chili sauce yin-yang styled is very apt for this oriental, asian inspired dish.

Creamy Cheese and Bacon Soup. One good thing about this food presentation is the use of a colored tray. The dish shine through although the tray is a bit cluttered. The spoon could have been eliminated yet placed directly into the bowl. The bacon curls added some twist into the color of the soup. However, its crispness could have been preserved and enjoyed more if it's added on the side together with the buttered bread.

Desserts, desserts and more desserts! We were actually more excited in the dessert segment. We feel that we can play more in this food category. Besides, who do not heart sweets? Definetely, not this lot!

This is my team's second masterpiece, Graham Buko Pie. Okay, we've overdone this a little bit. We were actually thorn between serving it Pinoy style or with some added twist. That's why adding the buko juice on the side is a little over kill. We are accidentally making our customer over stuffed with "buko" in this case. We should have focused on the idea of "buko pie a la mode". The yellow ice cream is already enough for the white buko pie. However, since we were quite limited with the shape of the plate, we thought that the food presentation should come in three.

Chocolate Graham Tiramisu, isn't this too chocolatey to look at? The cocoa powder dust and the zigzag lines of chocolate syrup just blend well. You would want to have a slice right away.

Apple Graham Coffee Cake, I prefer the second presentation of this dessert. It's actually my favorite shot. It captures everything that you would expect on a slice of the cake. The apple cinnamon on top of the cake garnished with mint leaves liven up the plate a bit.

Honey Graham Banana Pockets, tastewise this is one of the best tasting desserts. It resembles that of our typical banana roll with a twist. The interplay of colors on the plate harmonized the overall presentation. The use of fruits as sidings for the banana pockets is also very fitting.

The winner of the dessert category, Graham Banana Chocolate Pudding. This food design is intended for the kids market. Don't you think they will just love this? I can imagine kids lining up for this creation. The colors, the style and the ingredients used, I think everything says it all. On the whole, I could not over emphasize how inspiring and creative this food workshop was! We can just head on to our kitchen and make it deliciously steaming with all gustatory elements, always.


ALiNe said…
Hmmm.. interesting! thanks!

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