Maple Ginger Chili Shrimp Soba Bowls
I’m going to keep this one brief guys. At least about the recipe itself. It’s a great recipe that has a good little kick of heat in it and includes a good amount of veggies. It’s totally satisfying and the sauce is absolutely ‘lick the bowl clean’ good.
Both my husband and I love soba noodles and this right here is one of our favourite combos. The shrimp is not only tender and dripping of that delicious sauce but it also cooks up really fast meaning this dish comes together really quickly making it perfect for a midweek meal.
I mentioned already about that kick of heat. To make it kid friendly or wimp friendly (joking!!!) either reduce the Sriracha and chili flakes or omit altogether. It will still be packed with flavour but without the heat.
I enjoyed shooting this a lot. Putting together food or smoothie bowls is probably my favourite thing to cook/make, plate, decorate and shoot. The smoothie bowls are trickier because of the chronic heat in this country but I still have fun making them.
Here’s a few things I have learned from others and along the way by trial and error when photographing these kinds of bowls. The meat always needs to look moist, veggies need to look fresh and crunchy, noodles need to look wet and appetising not dry, and garnishes and herbs need to look fresh as well. Good lighting also goes a long way too. I wash my veggies and herbs and then spin them dry in my salad spinner and keep them cool right up to when I plate.
Plate your noodles and don’t overfill your bowl with them. Then build around your noodles. I put the shrimp on the noodles but I don’t baste them with sauce until right before I take my shot and I keep basting them right through the shoot. I always have a brush and small bowl with a bit of olive oil in it close by when I’m shooting and I brush what needs to be brushed to keep it looking moist. So I brushed oil on the noodles so they don’t look dry and I mist my veggies if needed or baste them with oil or water to keep them from looking dry as well.
Meat is sometimes the hardest thing to photograph but keeping the whole basting thing in mind when shooting meat is critical to making it look appetising. Those are just some very basic little tricks of the trade to making your food look fabulous when you post it on Instagram or on your blog. Little touches like this really make a difference though. I’m still learning lots and getting a lot of help from other bloggers who inspire me to take better shots, style my food more appealingly and sometimes come out of my comfort zone when it comes to styling.
A good camera obviously helps but you don’t need one to get decent shots. There are tons of bloggers out there that use their cellphones to shoot. Just try to get clear shots in good lighting and try to make your food look as appealing as possible.
I loved sharing these simple little tips and will share more as I remember and as I learn more. Hope you enjoyed them and hope they helped. If you have any to share I would love to hear about them in your comments!!
- 8-10 oz of soba noodles
- 1 lb shrimp fresh or frozen cleaned and deveined
- 1 tbsp butter/ghee
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 4 cloves of garlic minced
- ½ inch piece of ginger grated
- ¼-½ tsp of chili flakes depending on how much heat you can handle
- Salt and pepper to taste
- ¼ cup hoisin sauce
- Juice and zest of one lime
- 2 tbsp sesame oil
- ½ cup soy sauce or Tamari
- 2 tbsp maple syrup
- 2 tsp Sriracha
- 2 tbsp water
- 1 tsp cornstarch or thickening agent
- With your choice of crispy veggies like radishes, cucumbers, shredded cabbage, mushrooms, watercress, carrots , snap peas etc
- ½ cup of chopped chives
- ½ cup of chopped cilantro/chadon beni
- Slices of lime (optional)
Combine and mix all sauce ingredients into a small pot and bring to a boil on medium heat for a minute or two until thickened and then take of heat and set aside
While you prep the shrimp bring a large pot of water to boil and cook the soba noodles according to package directions and then drain, set aside, and keep warm.
Pat the shrimp dry and season well with salt and pepper
Heat a medium sized pan to medium heat and melt the butter and add the oil to it. Once it’s hot add your ginger, garlic and chili flakes and sauté for a couple of minutes to infuse the oil and butter with tons of flavour.
Add the shrimp and sauté until they are nice and tender and cooked through - flipping to cook both sides.
Once the shrimp is cooked pour in the sauce and heat through. Take of the heat and set aside
Plate noodles and top with shrimp and sauce and garnish with all the veggies and chives and cilantro and a squeeze of lime and enjoy!!