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How to Garnish


Bell Pepper Garnishes
Whenever possible, it's a good idea to make garnishes before you get involved in the final tasks of meal preparation. Especially when you're entertaining, you don't have much time for details at the last minute.

Try It!
Here are some recipes from our collection to use with garnishes:

Some garnishes, however, don't fare so well if they are made too far in advance. But that's not the case with many creative and colorful vegetable garnishes. Most can be made as much as a day ahead, then placed in airtight containers or wrapped in clear plastic wrap and refrigerated until the next day.

Look for vegetables that are evenly shaped, blemish-free, and at the right stage of ripeness to get the best results. In general, the firmer the vegetable, the easier it is to work with and the longer the finished garnish will stay fresh and attractive.

Bell Pepper Rings

Use bell pepper rings to garnish a burger.

To make bell pepper ring garnishes:
  1. Make circular cut with paring knife around top of pepper.

    Cut top of pepper with a paring knife.
    ©2006 Publications International, Ltd.
    Cut top of pepper with a paring knife.

  2. Pull stem from pepper; scoop out seeds and membrane with a spoon.

    Pull stem from pepper.
    ©2006 Publications International, Ltd.
    Pull stem from pepper.

  3. Rinse pepper under running water to remove any excess seeds; drain well.

  4. For rings, thinly slice pepper crosswise; remove any excess.

    Slice pepper crosswise when making bell pepper ring garnishes.
    ©2006 Publications International, Ltd.
    Slice pepper crosswise.

  5. Garnish as desired.
Bell Pepper Cup

Use a pepper container in place of a bowl when serving creamy dips or guacamole. Or, use a bell pepper cup to hold celery and carrot sticks as an edible centerpiece.

To make bell pepper cup garnishes:
  1. Place bell pepper on cutting board. Cut about 1/2 inch around stem with paring knife; discard stem.

    Cut around stem with a paring knife.
    ©2006 Publications International, Ltd.
    Cut around stem with a paring knife.

  2. Remove and discard membrane and seeds. Wash the pepper under cold running water.

    Remove and discard seeds.
    ©2006 Publications International, Ltd.
    Remove and discard seeds.

  3. If necessary, cut a thin slice off bottom of pepper to create flat surface. Stand pepper up. Fill as desired.

    Cut a thin slice of pepper bottom to create a flat surface.
    ©2006 Publications International, Ltd.
    Cut a thin slice of pepper bottom
    to create a flat surface, if needed.

  4. Garnish.

    Garnish with Bell Pepper Cups.
    ©2006 Publications International, Ltd.
    Garnish with Bell Pepper Cups.

Bell Pepper Basket

For an inventive presentation, fill pepper with single servings of tuna, egg, or ham salad. Serve on a bed of red-tipped romaine.

To make bell pepper basket garnishes:
  1. Place pepper, stem end down, on cutting board. Break off stem if necessary, to get pepper to sit upright.

    Break off stem if needed.
    ©2006 Publications International, Ltd.
    Break off stem if needed.

  2. Starting slightly off center, make a vertical cut from top of pepper just down to middle of pepper with paring knife.

    Cut down the middle of the pepper.
    ©2006 Publications International, Ltd.
    Cut down the middle of the pepper.

  3. Make a second parallel cut 1/2 inch from first cut, creating the basket "handle."

    Make a second parallel cut to create the basket
    ©2006 Publications International, Ltd.
    Make a second parallel cut to create
    the basket "handle."

  4. Make a horizontal cut from side of pepper to first cut in pepper.

    Make a horizontal cut.
    ©2006 Publications International, Ltd.
    Make a horizontal cut.

  5. Remove piece of pepper. Turn pepper around; repeat on other side.

    Remove pepper pieces on both sides to make bell pepper basket garnishes.
    ©2006 Publications International, Ltd.
    Remove pepper pieces on both sides.

  6. Carefully remove membrane and seeds from pepper with paring knife; discard.

    Remove seeds and membrane with paring knife.
    ©2006 Publications International, Ltd.
    Remove seeds and membrane
    with paring knife.

  7. Wash pepper basket under cold running water. Fill as desired.

  8. Garnish.

    Garnish with Bell Pepper Basket.
    ©2006 Publications International, Ltd.
    Garnish with Bell Pepper Basket.

Bell Pepper Triangles

Float a bell pepper triangle on the top of your favorite creamy soup.

To make bell pepper triangle garnishes:
  1. Stand bell pepper, stem side up, on cutting board.

    Stand pepper upright.
    ©2006 Publications International, Ltd.
    Stand pepper upright.

  2. Cut a slice, about 1/4 inch thick, off each side of pepper with paring knife.

    Cut a slice off each side of the pepper.
    ©2006 Publications International, Ltd.
    Cut a slice off each side of the pepper.

  3. Remove membrane and seeds; discard.

    Remove membrane and seeds.
    ©2006 Publications International, Ltd.
    Remove membrane and seeds.

  4. Cut each pepper slice into a rectangle 1-1/4 inches long and 3/4 inch wide.

    Cut each pepper slice according to a ruler.
    ©2006 Publications International, Ltd.
    Cut each pepper slice according to a ruler.

  5. Starting one-third of the way from one long side of each rectangle, cut down remaining length of rectangle, ending 1/4 inch from other end.

    Cut down remaining length of rectangle.
    ©2006 Publications International, Ltd.
    Cut down remaining length of rectangle.

  6. Turn rectangle around; repeat on other side.

  7. To make each triangle, hold the two outer corners of a rectangle and bring both corners to center.

    Bring both corners of rectangle to center.
    ©2006 Publications International, Ltd.
    Bring both corners of rectangle to center.

  8. Overlap ends to secure. If desired, place triangles in ice water to crisp. Remove; drain well.

    Overlap ends of bell pepper triangle to secure.
    ©2006 Publications International, Ltd.
    Overlap ends of triangle to secure.

  9. Garnish as desired.

    Garnish with Bell Pepper Triangles.
    ©2006 Publications International, Ltd.
    Garnish with Bell Pepper Triangles.

Another crunchy vegetable is the carrot. We'll teach you how to garnish with everyone's favorite orange vegetable in the next section.

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