Plating Skills 101 with Juno Kim

When we saw tickets were available for Chef Juno Kim's food plating class at Oak and Fort we ran to get our tickets faster than a teenage girl running for a One Direction reunion concert.

After we came home and were able to look through our photos and notes on how to plate and tips to take artistic food photos like Chef Juno (check out the pictures below!), we can say it was absolutely worth it. 

We're sharing some of the top tips so that you too can start to flood our Insta feeds with artful meals!

Where to start

Head to the farmers market! Let the ingredients and colours guide your inspiration. 

Determine what’s your style

Is this dish minimal, rustic, refined, or more family style? You can fill your plate with negative space to let the ingredients and artful swooshes breathe, or you can create depth and drool-worthy layers by serving things up that look like you could dive straight in with your hands.

Let the vessel be your guide

Your choice of tableware should pair with your plating style. A large platter will fit a big family style dish, whereas a hand-thrown ceramic piece might fit a rustic plating better. We love getting dish and plating envy from The Food Gays.

Chef Juno reviewing our gorgeous ingredients and how to get started.

Chef Juno reviewing our gorgeous ingredients and how to get started.

It’s a design process

Try to keep your dish to no more than 5 ingredients and 2-3 colours (complimentary colours always work best). To keep your dish looking dynamic you also want to think about shapes, and texture. If your plate looks like it’s missing something, Juno says it’s probably texture. Try nuts and seeds or puffed quinoa to add some visual interest. 

Find your order

Think about the order that people will eat your dish in. Keep in mind that most are right-handed, so plan to plate it to accommodate that. Will they need a big dollop of sauce under the cauliflower or should each component be eaten separately? Your dish should fill balanced through flavour, colour and shape. 

Juno Kim pro-tips 

Looking for the perfect, thin shaving? Juno says that the Japanese mandolin is the only way to go. You'll also want to invest in plating tweezers, brushes for stylish swishes, offset spatulas for sliding portions on to your plate, and finding a spoon that has the right balance for your master puree swoosh. 

Our Results!

Oak & Fort accommodated us with gorgeous ceramics and backgrounds to play with. Check out the photos below to see how we did.

Be sure you’re following Juno @jun0k for more of his master classes on food styling, food photography, and upcoming dinners and cooking classes.