The Meat Tool Used By Food Stylists To Beautifully Plate Pasta

There are several reasons why restaurant food tastes better than what you cook at home. That's not to say it's impossible to create a restaurant-quality meal in the comfort of your kitchen. However, whipping up something delicious is just half of the battle.

In the culinary world, the presentation of food is just as important as its taste. Research suggests that sight is the most important sense when it comes to our perception of the dish in front of us, per The Guardian. That being said, it may sound overwhelming to tack on mastering the art of plating and food styling to your list of things to do to become a top-notch home chef. However, a tip shared by food artist and filmmaker David Ma suggests that you may already have at least one tool utilized by food stylists in your home already. As a bonus, it's pretty easy to use.

In a TikTok video, Ma revealed that one of his favorite pieces of equipment for plating pasta is a meat carving fork, which helps twirl spaghetti noodles before transporting them from pan to plate. "It should slide right off the fork, and then you're gonna top it with some sauce for taste and presentation," he explained. As a final step, Ma garnishes the dish with parmesan cheese and basil, creating a picture-perfect plate of food that almost looks too beautiful to eat.

A carving fork isn't the only common tool pros use to plate pasta

There's nothing like sitting down to a plate of food worthy of a spot on your Instagram feed. With David Ma's carving fork-plating hack, your next at-home spaghetti night may become a full-blown photo shoot. The trick impressed several people on TikTok, including one user who was incredibly gracious for the tip. "That's exactly what I needed! Fantastic! Thanks," they commented. Another person replied, "Yes love this trick!"


**not a recipe video** just a tip for plating pasta from a former food stylist 🤌🏻 #behindthescenes #foodstyling #learnontiktok #filmtok #pasta

♬ Paris – 斌杨Remix

Ma's genius use of the carving fork also has support from people outside TikTok, including Giada De Laurentiis. The Food Network star demonstrated how she uses the meat tool to plate her noodles in a video for her lifestyle brand, Giadzy, back in 2020. However, unlike Ma, De Laurentiis also enlists the help of a large spoon to help perfect her spaghetti twirl and transfer it to a plate or bowl. Additionally, she explained that tongs can be used to plate pasta like a pro if you don't have a carving fork.

For this method, clamp down on a serving of pasta and twirl as you would with the carving fork — but make sure the tongs stay shut. After transferring to your plate or bowl, give the noodles a few extra twirls before carefully releasing the tongs. "It won't be as tall and perfect, but it'll still look great," said De Laurentiis.