Being a creative director by trade, I can’t help but constantly being seduced by color, shape, and the drama of it all when combined. I insist that with food, as in every aspect of life, presentation is everything. Please humor me by agreeing that a major facet of any “first impression” is deeply rooted in presentation.
For example, suppose we meet at my house for the first time for dinner and you arrive wearing mismatched, wrinkled and ripped-up clothing as well as that sneaker featured in the image on my last blog, White Plate as Canvas. I might come to the conclusion that (unless you’re Johnny Depp) you’re not very conscientious about your personal appearance and perhaps that attitude might carry over to how you conduct the balance of your life. However, in my own defense, after speaking to you for a while, I’d probably realize that you’re a wonderful person, even though your initial appearance might be somewhat distressing.
Then again, being the liberal-minded person that I am, let’s reconsider this scenario. If you’re a fashionista like my daughter Alexa, you would know that according to today’s standards, you are the only well-dressed person in the room, exuding an incredible ability to pair uncanny fashion, style and taste, a virtual magnet drawing all young people in the tri-state area to you for style advice.
But I digress. Trust me, there will be no further differences of opinion by the time you finish reading this post! As a somewhat related follow-up to last week’s blog, White Plate as Canvas, I submit for your approval, Black is Beautiful. Oh, the drama of the centerpiece when your guests and their twenty children (all under age five) first arrive simultaneously in starving anticipation of appetizers fresh from the oven. The difference between me and some of my closest friends is that they insist on using family heirlooms as the focal point of the table. I’ve seen the most beautiful antique show pieces that have been in families for generations, fall to the floor when little Johnny (I am in no way suggesting Johnny Depp, but would pay money to witness that!) mounts the table in order to get to the specially-prepared treat, macaroni and cheese mini cups, only to knock over said family relic and watch it (and my friend) fall to pieces on the floor, never to be the same again.
My motto is stay simple, stay affordable, and most of all, STAY SANE. The next time you know you’re hosting one of these joyful galas in your home, take a short trip to the local Target, TJ Maxx, or Homegoods in your area and begin your quest for a simple, medium to large black bowl. Fill said black bowl with a combination of colorful fruits and veggies and watch the bowl come alive. It will become the epitome of beauty, elegance, and the centerpiece of not only the table, but conversation. I guarantee that EVERYONE will agree that this fabulous black bowl is a thing of beauty and that someone in your party will comment on the unexpected simplicity and graciousness of this gorgeous display item (the black bowl, not Johnny Depp).
The Big Tine
*Macaroni and cheese mini-cup recipe provided only if you ask me for it in the comment area 😉