Cooking, in a way, is an art; of course, it’s a skill that requires a lot of practice and trial-and-error, but once you successfully roast a full chicken or perfect just the right amount of salt in your tortilla soup, you feel like you’ve made it. Culinary arts, get it?
Granted, posting up behind the stove or frolicking around the kitchen isn’t everyone’s first (or even second or third) love, and you may find yourself becoming more or less into it as you get older. One thing’s for sure though: When you whip up an impressive meal, the temptation to show it off is intense. I’ve barely upgraded from a simple chicken parm or stir fry myself, but still I find myself sending photos to my mom (whom I still call for advice on how to store half a sweet potato, mind you) to “show off.”
But the worst thing for your cooking self-esteem is completing a particularly arduous recipe, having it come out great and then having no idea how to present it well. You can’t just dump a beautiful filet of salmon on a scratched, plastic plate and expect anyone to be dazzled, you know? It’s like getting a blowout and then throwing your hair up in a messy bun -- lots of work for no reward.
There’s something so satisfying about a well-plated meal. Just consider the wild popularity of foodie Instagram accounts. Are we going to actually make 90 percent of the recipes these food bloggers share? Probably not, but boy do I love looking at them. The majority of us are far from chef (or even Chrissy Teigen) status, but just like learning how much garlic is too much and figuring out which shelf in the oven works best for brownies, it’s all about practice! Luckily, enough chefs have divulged a secret or two for how to get started plating like a master.