I always say that if someone you’re cooking for says, “Wow!” when you put the food on the table there’s almost no chance they won’t enjoy eating it.
That’s not say that cooks should worry about crockery and to hell with the salt. Or that food should be tweezered onto the plate to ensure the most artistic arrangement possible. In fact, I can’t bear food that looks as if it’s been preened and poked by a thousand hands before it reached my fork.
But I do think food should look appetizing. Because then you’re half way there. Your guest is willing the food to sate the appetite the visual appeal has whetted. And, for me, an appetizing plate is about abundance, generosity and showing off the natural beauty of the food in a way that makes the eater think, “that looks like it’s going to taste delicious.”
And not only do I like beautiful food, I like my pictures of that food (if you follow the G&G Instagram account, you’ll know this) to look appetizing too. And, for me, the same rules apply to the pictures as the plates of food – they should make you want to dive in. It must be mouth-watering.
So, I was delighted when the ever-lovely Daylesford Organics invited me and Mandy (the organised half of the G&G private cheffing business) to a workshop with food stylist and The Little Plantation blogger/stylist/photographer, Kimberly Espinel, last week as part of their new series of floristry and styling events. Kimberly’s Instagram account is an enviable array of beautiful flat lays and her knowledge of what makes an image ‘pop’ (that’s trendy photo jargon for can’t-quite-put-my-finger-on-why-but-my-eye-is-draw-to-this-image) is second to none.