Food Appearance: Does it really matter?

Food appearance

“Enchant, stay beautiful and graceful, but do this, eat well. Bring the same consideration to the preparation of your food as you devote to your appearance. Let your dinner be a poem, like your dress.” – Charles Pierre Monselet.

Digestion starts from the eyes.

As the food is to the stomach so also is food to the psychology of the eater. This effect helps prepare the mouth for the incoming food (the mouth-watering effect).

Now examine picture A and B

one pot meal recipe1A                B    jollof_rice_vegetable_salad_40_3.1.26_326X580_40_3.1.26_326X580_40_3.1.26_326X580

A little bit of art and science is involved – cooking is both technical and creative. I certainly will choose picture B over and over again, even in my sleep and dreams, this time around I would not be bothered eating in it lol. Food appearance and presentation is just as essential to the success of a dish as its taste and flavour. The way the food looks on the plate is what tempts our eyes and makes us want to taste it. Imagine how your room looks when it’s messy and how it looks when you clean it up, with the same ingredients, different results. So yes, food appearance and presentation is important. It can make or break a restaurant and it can turn a dinner party into a great success if done right.

Components of good food appearance and presentation.

How do you know what to pay attention to when presenting food to your pleasures? In cases where you have to present to your guest, what do you pay attention to? First, remind yourself what food appearance can do to the consumer. Food appearance is the visual effects of a food or its packaging. It can greatly influence the palatability of food. Now, get to it…

Balance variety and contrast.

An important rule of food appearance and presentation is balancing variety and contrast. It is good to have a variety of textures on the plate, but how these textures are combined is just as important.

Garnish or no garnish?

That is a crucial question when it comes to food appearance and presentation. Some foods would look uninteresting without garnish. Take our salmon, fish, or sushi for example. It looks great with the added garnishes that bring a pop of colour to the plate.

sushi salmon 2 15356930-Smoked-salmon-and-prawn-nigiri-and-norimaki-sushi-garnished-with-red-and-black-fish-eggs-and-chives--Stock-Photo

Portion sizes.

Matching portion size with plate size is another important aspect of food presentation. A plate that is too small for the food portion it offers will look messy and overcrowded. On the other hand, a small portion on too large a plate will look sparse.

How colourful is your food today?

So yes, colour and the appeal of various foods is also closely related. Just the sight of food fires neurons in the hypothalamus sending the message of appeal. Try out a thick new trick, mix colour to make your food healthy and also appealing. Colours can be in the forms of vegetables, and the truth is vegetables cannot be overemphasized. It brings beauty to your stomach and taste bud.

By Blessing Nwachukwu

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