If you HAVE to photograph your food… READ THIS!

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Karma’s good friend and client, Chef Tim Barton, shared his tips with Karma’s Jo Riding for a pan-fried restaurant perfect steak – every time! Jo had the pleasure of visiting Roger’s Daytime Ottawa to share the easy steps to cooking an incredible steak – AND how to photograph it so you can brag about your skills on social media!

If you HAVE to take photos of your culinary creations, here are a few tips to keep in mind!
• The Tilt – Use a napkin, or whatever you have handy to tilt your plate slightly towards camera
• Not overhead – food doesn’t look great that way, especially with your shadow in it!
• Look for the light – if it’s glistening to your eyes, it’s glistening for the camera… try a candle! 🙂
• Zoom in! – People don’t need to see your whole place setting, table and kitchen! Focus on the food, and don’t be afraid to fill the frame…

And remember often food photography isn’t what meets the eye! Professional photographers use many tricks to make their food look perfect for camera. A few fun food photo facts:
• The milk in cereal commercials is white glue
• The wet shiny fruit in ads are covered in hairspray
• Ice Cream is usually dried potato flakes
• Red meat is usually photographed raw, with only the outside treated with perfect grill marks using a blow torch and a curling iron.

Now Let’s Get Cooking!
1. Pre-heat your pan to very high with oil
2. Let your steaks warm to room temperature
3. Pat the steaks down dry with a paper towel
4. Salt and pepper is all you need… But you have to use twice the amount you would normally use at home… (This is all about taste, not health food!)
5. Once your pan is nice and hot, place the steak in the pan
6. Sear for 1.5 – 2 minutes depending on the thickness of the meat
7. When you see colour coming halfway up the meat – or you see juice coming up through the top – it’s flipping time!
8. Sear on the other side for 1.5 – 2 minutes, and reduce heat to medium
9. Add garlic butter, 2 large pats. Spoon the melted butter on to the top of the steak while it finishes
10. Here is where choice of steak matters – a very low fat tenderloin, versus a fatty, bone-in rib steak make a difference in cook time
11. You can use a meat thermometer to ensure your favorite temperature. I prefer a medium rare – which I pull off the heat at around 118 to 120 degrees
12. OR you can use the “face test” method. Forehead – Well Done, Cheek – Rare, Chin Medium Rare
13. Let it REST!!! This is vital for the best steak experience, it allows the juices to soak back into the meat, and also finishes cooking time
14. Make it colourful! Always try to get at least 3 colours on your plate for the best look!
15. ENJOY! 😀


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