I seem to regularly have opportunities to garnish. I can make bunnies from olives or grapes, ducks from apples, and tomato roses. For those who wield your knives like a light saber or aspire to what are your favorite edible garnishes.

Oh, I thought garnishes these days means decorating with herbs and leaves etc. Must be a different generation thing. :laughing: (joking…)


I remember as a kid, the decorations e.g. vegetable craved gold fish or carrot flower thing recycled in every dish. Some can be rather impressive.

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I think you may be right - or maybe a different culture thing. With one exception, I havent seen carrot flowers and the like in a restaurant for very many years. The exception where I do still see them are a certain type of Chinese restaurant - the sort that is more aspiring than actually upmarket. And they can be very pretty and obviously skilful. It’s not something I recall seeing in a domestic setting here in the UK.


I love the way this foccacia was garnished.


Yes, the last meal on a boat cruise in Vietnam Halong bay, they sculpted something gigantic, I think the chef wanted to impress us for more tips. Unfortunately, they forgot about the edible part, which wasn’t enough.

Note there was light inside the boat

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Are these considered as garnishes as well? Meat pies.


From the Calum Franklin of the Pie Room in London!


To my mind garnish must be edible. YMMV.

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I don’t really think of those as garnishes, naf. Except for the bird. But those are lovely looking pies - very 19th century, particularly the one in your second photo. I had a quick look at the restaurant menu and they seem to fill their pies with very traditional ingredients, so the style of the pie fits perfectly.


Those Vietnamese ones weren’t edible.

Floral garnishes are made with flowers and foliage that haven’t been sprayed with insecticides so are theoretically edible, but I doubt anyone actually does.


Thinly sliced apple tart.


Sometimes the doubt is more how long the vegetables has been cut and left out. In some restaurants, they are recycled from one dish to another.

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I’ve never seen them before, don’t know the historical context. I discovered them just a few weeks before, find them beautiful. I guess since they are highly decorative, must be on some rich men or royal’s tables.

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But this, like the pastry crusts, lovely as it is, is a part of the dish that is to be eaten, not a garnish . A garnish is commonly understood as a decoration added on the plate/platter. If it’s made of something edible, the diner can choose whether or not to eat it.


OK, thanks for the explanation. It’s more clear now.

Can we have the pleasure to see some of your masterpieces? :relaxed:

Mmmm, I have a problem with garnishes that obviously require so much time and attention. Their labor intensive creation somehow gets in the way of my enjoyment of the dish. As you, naf, recently wrote, it’s all about deliciousness. Do these contrived roses really contribute that much to the taste? And this question is aimed not just at this plate but many/all where the thrust is all visual seduction.

I’m putting those contrived tomato roses on my focaccia next time . Along with the parsley. Might even hang it on the wall . Lol . See above.

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I guess I’m just used to cooking for guys who had their forks ready to spear whatever came out of the oven or pan, Ooohs and aaaahs came after first bites, rather than from any physical beauty of the dish. In fact, I doubt any of them could describe what the original dish looked like. But in the larger scheme of things, why does one cook?