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Presentation of "classic" meat/fries/salad dishes - looking for ideas

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 

Two of the bestselling items on my menu are Steak Frites with a brandy/cream/crushed pepper deglace and a side salad, and Wiener Schnitzel (veal escalope viennoise), also with handcut fries and a side salad. These being classics with a kind of standardised presentation round here in Northern Europe, i.e. meat slapped on plate, pile of fries right next to it, salad on a side plate, I seem to struggle presenting such dishes in an interesting way. My place is a small country restaurant, we source locally farmed produce and meats and serve quality food in an uncomplicated manner. However, I find the standard presentation extremely boring, so I'd like to pick your brains for ideas. Not very gimmicky, simply somewhat more interesting, perhaps by means of garnishing rather than "deconstruction"?

 

Cheers,

Recky

post #2 of 5

At very upscale steak houses you will find that the meat is served by itself on a plate.  Nothing on it, under it, or next to it.  I quite like this presentation of steak and have seen many presentations like it.  My very very very favorite was at Tom Colicchio's restaurant Craft.  The grass-fed ribeye steak was served on a small cast iron pan (warm plate, not hot).  Right next to it in the same pan was a large roasted bone with a small spoon inserted into the marrow.  The whole dish screamed "eat me!"  The side items were served family style in pretty copper pans. 

 

Type "steak frites" into google images and you'll get a variety of inspiration.

 

Remember that simple is always better.  Frites need to be crisp so you are limited in how to served them together with the protein for fear that they soak up juice.  When I order steak frites in nyc I typically see this arrive at my table:

"You are what you eat, so don't be fast, cheap, easy, or fake."

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"You are what you eat, so don't be fast, cheap, easy, or fake."

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post #3 of 5

I think it would be kind of fun for a schnitzle being cut in strips and overlapped in different ways on the plate to give it more structure. Might be better to cut in strips and bread  before frying to give a more "intact" feel to dish as presented.

post #4 of 5

In my opinion,the best presentation of a Wiener Schnitzel  I have ever seen was when the Schnitzel was served on an oblong white cramic plate with a gold rim.

On the Schnitzel itself was ,on the side away from you on the outside ,one lemon wedge on the left side and one lemon wedge on the right side,both facing inwards toward the center of the Schnitzel.

Between the lemon wedges were from left to right just like small frame tiny piles of raw small diced tomatoes,then fine chopped hard boiled egg white,then small diced pickles.then fine chopped hard boiled egg-yolk followed with anothe pile of very small  capers.Under both lemon wedged was one single parsley leaf with the stem stuck under the lemon.

It looked like the schnitzel was itself in a frame., and there was no other food on the plate. Fries and salad was served on the side on 2 small round plates.

Every smoker quits smoking sooner or later!

Only the smart ones are doing it while they are still alive.

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Every smoker quits smoking sooner or later!

Only the smart ones are doing it while they are still alive.

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post #5 of 5

I like steaks on a wooden plate. Ceramic, cast iron (?), etc., behave really bad on knives and make the meat feel preceptually tougher. There're also some very nice wooden bowls for the salad and the fries. You can even order some custom design plates.

Gebbe Got uns allen, uns Trinkern, einen so leichen und schönen Tod. Joseph Roth.
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Gebbe Got uns allen, uns Trinkern, einen so leichen und schönen Tod. Joseph Roth.
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