The human race and food presentation
The human race is strange and particularly when it comes to food presentation. I proudly count myself as being amongst the peculiars who are concerned about food presentation and especially when I’m going to consume it!
After all, if the food doesn’t look good then it can’t possibly be good, can it?
So where did that come from and what’s it about?
Well there is a short story attached to this so please bear with me.
I had to go to the south coast today to pick a spare part for my Land Rover which I had bought on eBay. I left early to avoid the Sunday traffic which is getting as bad as weekdays around the M25 (For those from further a field, it’s the motorway that circumnavigates London and is affectionately known as Britain’s largest car park). As it so happened, I sailed round, picked up the steering box but then hit heavy traffic on the way back!
Great I thought, muttering oaths and things while listening to meaningless drivel on one of the lesser known talk stations. You might get the drift that I was a little hacked off! I had hoped to return in reasonable time, fit the part and watch the rugby match between England and France on which I had a little wager with a French colleague of mine.
Well the best laid plans as they say. So I stopped at a little family café on one of the south’s main arterial roads for some lunch and chose sausages, mashed potato and French beans with gravy. Simple food but tasty fayre! They were Cumberland sausages, one of my favourites.
Am I being too critical about the way the food was presented?
Well this is where we return to the title of this article, food presentation. There simply wasn’t any or none that I could see! The food itself was excellent and really tasty. Sadly the way the food had been dumped on the plate made it look quite un-appetising and it was swimming in enough gravy to sail a modest model boat.
The trouble with food presentation and the time it takes
Now you might say I’m being overly critical and I guess from the fact that the café was fairly full, you might be right. But let me present my case.
Most of us only really cook something really special over the weekend and normally for the main meal on Sunday unless we are entertaining.
We all lead busy lives and time or shortage of it means that that’s the best we can do. The rest of the time we usually cook plain but good food.
But that doesn’t mean we can’t present food well so it looks good, appetising and appealing.
By placing food carefully on the plate, perhaps using a thick sauce as opposed to a runny gravy to vary colour and adding a garnish or two, the plainest of meals can be transformed into looking quite special. The nice thing is that it doesn’t have to take much time.
So maybe we should change the earlier statement to ‘if the food doesn’t look good, it must be good’ and even with the plainest of meals it certainly can with just a little care.
Watch out for articles on sauces and how to make garnishes for every occasion to enhance the plainest of food.
ps The part I picked up for the Land Rover was the wrong one!
pps The upside was that I won my little wager!
ppps Well presented food ups the meals quality factor