Saturday, March 10, 2012

Experimenting New Ingredient is Experimenting a New Shoot

What i just said in my topic is absolutely true. A food photography definitely comes out within you only when you have that urge to try something the next morning you get up from your bed. Don't sit in the thought that a morning you will get a call from an elite hotel asking you to come down and take photos of their newly tried dish by one of their renowned chef's. No! You are the master of your creativity. Only you have to be your own chef, run to the departmental stores rather than running down to a mega sale offer this Sunday. Pick up some new ingredients that you read about in any of your food magazines, go ahead try that recipe out. Make mistakes, learn from them. But remember, just make it out for once.

This photo shoot is the exact example of what i want to explain you in this topic. Lately i wanted to put something new for my readers here. I also wanted to put down some new recipes so that everyone gets something new to try on, and not just another rice recipes that we all read in almost all the recipe and food blogs, just that they are modified with different words. Ingredients are just the same for all. I went to the near by grocery store the last Sunday which keeps lot of international ingredients. I did not really know what i am picking up because i din't have a recipe in my mind. I just went on picking up ingredients randomly which felt cheesy to my mind.
Like i tried my hands on Thai Jasmine Rice, Chicken Satay Sauce, Sage Leaves, Mushrooms etc, trust me i have never used Thai Jasmine Rice ever before in my life, but i had this eagerness to try new ingredients in my cooking. Invent something new and place before you to give you a invention what i call as Culinary Goddess Inventions. I am not exactly explaining you how i prepared this dish. Though i will be writing a recipe corner on this soon. I want to just let you know, if you want to click away any food just for the sake of your food photography business. That is not going to work at all. You have to start yourself from the bits.

When you cook a dish all by yourself, there is a very different urge to get it shoot and proudly keep in front of your fans. So that you know you have worked hard to get this frame so correct. Place all the props you think will look good with your dish. I went shopping for this black table liner, I have lot of new ways to display a black background for my food photography. There will be lot shoot which will show up my black table liner in near future but totally in different ways. Bring out all your old decorations that you don't use anymore. Or whenever you go for a trip in a new place pick up something that will please your eyes, but see that it pleases you only keeping your food photography in mind. I picked up this green candle lamp from a flea market in a small hill station. But i never used it up til now. The very first time i lit this lamp was to shoot my Thai jasmine rice recipe :)

I never knew i will get such a glow of this lamp and that too in this photo shoot. I am happy that i purchased it. There are several such things that you must have bought from small flea markets but never got a chance to use? why not now when you will be cooking and shooting your new recipe right after you read this post? Everything is easy until you make it look like one. Food photography starts from scrap and its something you make it right from the raw ingredient to a beautiful, lavish and mouthwatering dish oozing out from your computer screen and making your viewers lick their screens.

What are you waiting for? Go ahead explore the galore of your minds filled with so many creative ideas. I am sure you will come up with something never seen before.


Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Authentic Chinese Chicken Dumplings

We all have one favorite cuisine of our own. And if we are into cooking, we all make a try once or more times to make that one particular dish by our own. I have been in love with dumplings or you might call it as momos or dimsums. Recently i tried to make a recipe of my own, as they are not some rocket science. The dumplings that i made turned up very juicy, irresistible and easiest. I am sharing my own recipe with you, hope you enjoy trying it out, if you like do tell me in my comments.

I am sorry for any flaws in my as this is a unprocessed image.

Well these are the ingredients for the dumplings.

100gms of boneless chicken
4 stalks of spring onion only the white part
8 small garlic pods
1/2 inch of ginger
4oz of finely chopped cabbage
2oz of finely chopped spring onion the green part
2tsp soy sauce
1tsp vinegar 
1tsp green chilly sauce
1/2tsp chinese salt
1tsp chilly flakes
1/2tsp dry mint leaves powdered
1/2tsp sesame oil
1/2tsp sugar
salt to taste

For the Wrapper
200ml all purpose flour
50ml Wheat flour
salt to taste
water at room temperature


Combine the chicken, garlic, white parts of spring onions, ginger. grind it till you get chicken mince and all the other ingredients are finely mixed. Take out in a bowl, and add all the rest of ingredients one by one, mix everything well preferably with your hand. Let it set in refrigerator for about 15 to 20min.

for the wrapper combine all the ingredients and knead a stiff dough. Roll out a large round disc with 1mm thickness, cut out small several rounds by stamping with cookie cutter or a sharp edged glass. Now fill the dough with the chicken mixture. Apply water on edges. Fold into 'D' shape, press the edges with a fork. You can try several shapes. See that the edges are well sealed.
Heat water in a steamer, add a piece of crushed ginger to the water this will give additional flavor to your dumplings because ginger leaves a very extraordinary fragrance when boiled. Oil the steaming plates and place your dumplings, close the lid and let the dumplings steam for about 10 to 15min or till done properly. Serve with Chinese Sauce.


How I Shot My First Cupcake and Other Stories

Writing this post is as exciting as making my first set of cupcakes was. I understand making a cupcake is not some rocket science, but making it just the right way like those wonderful cake artists do. I don't have the right inspiration or great artists around me from whom i can learn some great tricks. So i always keep hunting for such exclusive dishes online, and come with something like this.

I never learnt any cake recipe in any manual classes, neither my food photography is been taught to me. I learned to shoot food all by myself.
It's very important if you want to shoot any food photography, that you have the right light, prop and background. If you are less at anything you might end up with a bad photo. If you cannot invest in expensive props, cutlery or anything or that sort, do not worry. Because you can find some beautiful plates and saucers, forks, spoons right in your kitchen. Trust me i haven't invested in anything for this photograph. All the things i already had in my kitchen rack itself.

You don't have to be professional at each and everything. I believe if you have the right talent, the right urge and interest to become a food genius all you need to get started. This is a very basic cupcake recipe that comes from our mother's age and not any fancy ingredients have been used in.
Regarding the shooting of this cupcake? Yes it really got me interested just because i loved it vibrant colors on the black table liner. I always love to line up a candle around my food, it shows so much peace. For me Food is Peace :)

You see how the simple lit candles can throw a very different look to your food? Just like this using simple yet elegant props and decoration can make the simplest food light up your shoot. If you are a shopping junky its an add up. Whenever you go for any shopping make it sure that you pick up atleast one item to add in your kitchen to use the next time you are going to cook or shoot your food. May it be anything a table liner, a cutlery, a decoration, or just simply a new ingredient to try out in your next new recipe.
Until my next post. Have a great cooking and shooting time :)

PS. Please do not copy or violate any images and contents of this post. Ask do not Steal :) Thanks for visiting.