The Art of Making Food Look Good

Appearance is as important as taste if you want to stick to a healthy eating plan.

By Carol Sorgen
WebMD Weight Loss Clinic - Feature

Reviewed by Louise Chang, MD

You don't have to be a celebrity chef to make your meals as visually appealing as they are tasty -- and healthy. Just ask Brian Hill, currently seen on the Bravo reality series Top Chef, and also the personal chef to singer Mary J. Blige.

"It's so easy," he says. "Just remember to do what you like ... whatever you are and whatever you do, put it on the plate." If you make pottery, for example, says Hill, serve your veggies in your favorite handmade bowl. If you're a gardener, layer a colorful piece of salmon on a bed of edible homegrown flowers.

This technique, known in the culinary world as "plating," inspires professional chefs to create what they think of as "edible art."

"Presentation is crucial when serving any meal," says Michael Crane, corporate executive chef of ARAMARK, which provides food services to hospitals, universities, stadiums, and businesses around the world. "You need to create 'art' to make your food interesting. If it looks good, they will want to try it, and that goes for healthier meals too."