Tahini Tofu Fried Wontons

Ok blog world friends, I need some advice about lighting.  In this first year of posting and snapping pictures I’ve realized the dramatic impact of lighting in photographs.  To me, my blog is a place to document all of the things I have learned to cook, and the pictures are a visual reminder that I can sift through when doing future meal prep.  I am in NO way trying to take professional pictures, but I do want them to reflect the yummy dishes I am making – particularly in the winter when there is less natural light to work with.

In terms of my process, I am generally cooking meals at night for dinner, then use my iPad to capture images throughout the cooking process and before we eat.   We are typically fairly hungry and so I try to take the pictures efficiently (though some nights I get more carried away than others).  I place the plate somewhere that highlights the dish, snap snap snap, then we get to enjoy the food.

In my last apartment I had a back porch that I could easily step out onto, and when I took pictures outside I was getting images with such sharp colors like in this broccoli salad.  Swoon! In my new house, however, my best current options seem to be in my kitchen (pictured above on the left) which has a good light but casts some shadows, or the dining room table (pictured above on the right) which has more of a yellow tone that drives me bananas. As I save up money to eventually build a deck and get some outdoor space, what tips and tricks and words of wisdom can you share? I’m not looking to buy fancy equipment, but do want to learn and grow.

Thank you!  Oh, and these wontons are such a yummy snack, appetizer, or dinner treat. They came out of some experimenting and are still somewhat ‘under construction’ – but that didn’t stop me from eating a whole batch last night.  I’d love your tips on your favorite things to make with WonTon wrappers to fuel future experiments! 

wonton_3

Ingredients:

  • Wonton papers (about 3 oz)
  • 12 oz tofu – extra firm
  • 1/4 cup tahina
  • 2 Tablespoons hoisin
  • 1 Tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 squirt of sriracha

Steps and Notes:

  1. Dry the tofu by placing it on a plate with a paper towel on top. Add a plate or something with medium weight on top of the tofu and let rest/dry for about 10-15 minutes.
    • Note: I usually keep the tofu in the large block format during this stage
  2. Make the sauce by combining the tahini, hoisin, soy sauce and sriracha in a bowl and mixing well.
  3. Then, cut the tofu into flat strips. Coat it with the sauce, and saute in a pan for about 3 minutes per side.
    • Note: the goal here is to sear it a bit, but be careful not to burn it
  4. Then, place a wonton wrapper on a flat surface.
  5. Cut a small piece of tofu from the marinated and seared block and place it onto the wrapper.
  6. Dip your finger into some water and gently wet two edges of the wrapper (pictured above)
  7. Then, fold your wonton, press the sides well together, and you are ready to cook!
    • Note: I typically prepare the wontons first and then cook them so I am only doing one task at a time. But, you also could press, fry, and then cool them in batches.
  8. In a hot fry pan sear the wontons in a tiny bit of oil for about 2 minutes per side. Again, watching them closely so they don’t burn.
  9. Serve warm with the same sauce for dipping and enjoy!

 

Thoughts for Next Time:

  • I am in search of ideas for what to do with wonton wrappers. Please share your favorites!

wonton_2

8 comments

  1. Photos can be tricky, Caroline my wife does all that sort of stuff, she uses her iPhone with an app called camera + which does great editing and lighting. One thing she likes to do is to take shots from the same hight as the table, she prefers that to above shots. good luck 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Great idea. I hadn’t thought to download an ap so I will look into that this weekend. I’ll also look around your blog to check out her pics! Thank you for the tip! -Deb

      Like

  2. Struggling with the same here. I try to take pictures outside during the day time, but with the days getting shorter its getting hard. I love your wonton recipe, have a block of extra firm tofu going to buy the wrappers next!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ooh! Let me know what you think if you make them and if you have any ideas for variations. I am going to look into aps for my iPad based on some other suggestions. Overall though, I 100% agree that natural light is the best! Good luck to you as well.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. It’s all about white balance! You need to set your camera white balance setting to the kind of lighting you are using. (Natural daylight vs. tungsten lights vs. LED lights, etc.) Once you set that for the conditions your photos will be what you expect!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ooh! Ok. I am mostly taking pics on my iPad, so I am planning to look into some aps and will research their capabilities in regards to white balance. 🙂 I’m excited to start year two of the blog soon with these new tips! Hope your hand is almost healed!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. The pin comes out Tuesday, thanks!

        Liked by 1 person

  4. I am using my ipad for photos and have the same difficulties you do with lighting. I never thought to ask for advice! Silly me. thank you so much for sharing your question in the big world, and many thanks to all of you who have offered advice.

    Like

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