3 Aug

It’s All ‘A Matter Of Taste’ at IMA!

It’s often said we eat with our eyes. This statement may seem silly and stump some, but before you make the decision to take a bite of something that looks delicious, you use your visual senses to decide it’s worthy. Our chefs maintain this idea and each plate that leaves our kitchen, regardless of event, is plated and presented to our high standard for guests to enjoy. We love hearing people say ‘wow’ as their meal arrives to their table, and it’s an even higher compliment when they take a picture! Foodies are all around us, and we know that there may be a foodie or five at some of the events we cater to.

We believe there is a true art to the preparation, cooking and presentation of food. Every plate is a canvas. Every food item, a medium. It’s no wonder chefs are commonly called culinary artists or culinarians. Kahn’s Catering’s executive chefs Sam Merenda and Nardo Garcia are highly trained and experienced, and above all – love working with food. They brought their love and passion to the Indianapolis Museum of Art’s ‘A Matter of Taste’ summer camp and its many aspiring foodie campers through hands-on painting and plating activities, giving these young and aspiring culinarians the opportunity see what is involved in making dishes that are almost too pretty to eat.

Every great plate starts with an idea. Not only what you want the flavors to achieve, but how you want the dish to look. To help campers better understand this, our chefs explained their creative process and invited the kids to envision their perfect dessert. Sam and Nardo first discussed color and how colors look together. As well as shape and composition. All four components play an important role in plating the perfect dish.

A plated dessert prepared by one of our aspiring camper chefs.

Chefs Sam and Nardo welcomed the aspiring foodies into the Sutphin Fountain Café. Filing in, each camper was given an apron and a chef’s hat. Every camper had a work station filled with everything they would need to create their plated dessert. Before diving into decorating, Chef Sam gave campers a tour of Kahn’s Catering’s professional kitchen at the Indianapolis Museum of Art, showing them where some of our behind the scenes action happens for the events we cater at the IMA.


After their tour, campers returned to their work stations to engage their creativity. At each work station was a piece of rice paper for sketching with edible paints made of spices and fruits, small cakes for plating, icing, fruit sauces, and all of the professional tools they would need to complete their dessert. Starting off the activity, campers used food paints to create a vision for what they wanted to create with the available items. Once they finished painting, campers began to plate their desserts by adding fruit sauces, icing their cakes, and adding the finishing touches. As they worked Sam and Nardo demonstrated different techniques while continue the conversation about color, composition, and utilizing shape to draw the eye.


Unlike in our kitchens the campers had free reign to lick their fingers and dig into their desserts after they finished putting them together. They also created a cake to take home with them at the end of the day. We love when we can work with our venue partners to bring our love for food to others! Thank you to our partners at the Indianapolis Museum of Art for inviting us to be part of this inspiring camp!

Browse the gallery below to see all our photos from camp!

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