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What are some good garnishes? Trying to inspire some of my other chefs.

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jgraeff

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Hey guys,

we are currently working on a new menu and our chef has used the boring old parsley garnish for 30 + years. We will be keeping it for the signature dishes we are keeping but are trying to come up with more creative garnishes for entrees as well as pantry items.

If you have anything interesting to share that would be great.

No necessarily for any particular dish just any you guys like to use here and there.
 

ThEoRy

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I like to incorporate the garnish as a balanced part of the dish for a few reasons. You aren't prepping something in addition to the dish, it's a part of the dish. You aren't making extra work for yourself. You can pair ingredients that compliment each other. Making a suckling pig dish? How about a crispy apple chip? During the spring/summer we had a nice snapper dish that we finished with a shaved artichoke salad as the "garnish" Things like that. They make sense flavor wise and add something to the dish. Adding parsley for the sake of adding parsley adds nothing at all in my eyes.

So really it depends on the dish. What kinda stuff are we talking about here?
 

tkern

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shaved chives, chive batons, micro greens, chervil, pomegranite seeds, perserved lemon julienne, pickled anything, orchids, esplette, various dried and powdered whatnot.


But, as said, all depends on what compliments the dish.
 

ThEoRy

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Orchids?......





Everything else..
 

SpikeC

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As a consumer and not a chef, I would appreciate a garnish that relates to the dish, as Theory outlined above. Parsley? Puleeze!! If the parsley is not a key ingredient in the dish it does not belong on the plate.
 

NO ChoP!

Old Head
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Gremolata adds a nice flavor, and you can do plays on it; Cilantro lime; ginger orange; grapefruit sage; classic lemon parsley garlic....
 

Eamon Burke

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If it is on my plate, I am going to eat it. If it does not go well with the meal, that's totally your fault!
 

jgraeff

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As a consumer and not a chef, I would appreciate a garnish that relates to the dish, as Theory outlined above. Parsley? Puleeze!! If the parsley is not a key ingredient in the dish it does not belong on the plate.
Trust me we all agree but the owner makes the rules. He is technically the executive chef so what he says goes.

But ya I agree with theory as well and u try to do that with my food. I was just trying to think of some good garnishes that some other chefs use from time to time.
 

Eamon Burke

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I just garnish with things that are kind of optional eating, like peppers, strong herbs, something fermented, etc.

I guess it's from sushi...you make things out of foods you want to include in the meal--daikon shreds, carrot butterflies...I liked a simple one, making a pear out of prepared wasabi and a black sesame seed.
 

JohnnyChance

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Something pickled (like pickled shallots), something fried (like crispy shallots haha), vibrant and flavorful oils, fingerling potato chips cooked in foaming butter (or beet chips...or parsnip chips...or whatever), gremolata, herbs in all sorts of forms: fried, herb salad, batons, shaved, whole sprigs if that's your thing, haha, etc.
 

Keith Neal

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I used to carry cards that said:

This establishment has been identified as an offender by the
SPPPPPPP
(Society for the prevention of putting parsley on people's plates in public places)

Servers rarely saw the humor.
 

NO ChoP!

Old Head
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We use pea shoots and daikon sprouts as well. But they still have to make sense as far as cohesion with the dish...

As far as parsley goes, I see nothing wrong with properly executed chiffonade of flat leaf parsley to add a little color and freshness; just keep it off the rim of the plate.
 

jgraeff

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I guess micros are the 'in' thing atm..
i like these as well but finding the right one to go with the dish can be difficult. We also use edible flowers/orchids asides from them being pretty, the customers don't eat them and they really don't match flavors very well.
 

jgraeff

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I used to carry cards that said:

This establishment has been identified as an offender by the
SPPPPPPP
(Society for the prevention of putting parsley on people's plates in public places)

Servers rarely saw the humor.
can you send me some :)
 

jgraeff

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We use pea shoots and daikon sprouts as well. But they still have to make sense as far as cohesion with the dish...

As far as parsley goes, I see nothing wrong with properly executed chiffonade of flat leaf parsley to add a little color and freshness; just keep it off the rim of the plate.
agreed, however I'm talking literally a bunch of curly parsley on the top of the plate....
 

Tristan

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As a customer only, I like garnishes that I can eat. I also try to eat the garnish if I trust the restaurant. A sprig of parsley tells me not to trust that the plate's elements are well thought out, so I start removing things from the dish that I don't like, as I assume it wasn't that well thought out anyway. If it was thoughtfully garnished, I would eat it together with the dish to see the Chef's idea on how the finished plate should taste.

The only thing that I love scattered on top of everything is White Truffle shavings (I'm a white truffle sl ut)

I do like Chive sprigs balanced precariously if it goes with the food. But I love chives. so...

I like seasoned/fresh fruits added as a garnish for some dishes.
 

apicius9

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I agree, truffles are o.k on pretty much anything :) , otherwise I also prefer garnishes that make sense taste-wise and not only look pretty. And make sure that the main parts of the meal are larger than the garnishes... I remember vivid discussions with the patron of one of my usual up-scale hangouts that the potato gratin was so small that you couldn't see it under the garnishes.

Stefan
 

quantumcloud509

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Minced chives + minced parsley mix should confuse the KKF parsley haters long enough for you to run out the back door!
 

slowtyper

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Also not a fan of garnishes you can't eat, however I watch customers swoon and take pictures of these dishes with orchids and flowers and bleached seashells and martini glasses filled with ice on them all the time.

Thinking about getting those smaller edible flowers but...unsure.
 

MadMel

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Flowers are kinda a waste of money IMO. Micros too. Unless it provides something besides making the plate pretty. It has to contribute to the overall taste/texture/mouthfeel. Flowers on a main course usually makes me think that the chef is not confident enough of his dish.
 

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