Wednesday, December 30, 2009

online learning

As I am sitting in the e-learning seminar, my mind goes to my blog - trying to figure out how best could I do to facilitate my teaching. There a lot of things that I need to explore especially the technical know how on IT. A lot of things that I need to learn however at this present moment I trying my best to provide my students some support and assisstance through this blog. Hope it will help my students who taking the Food Styling subject. On that note I do hope students will take this opportunity to browse through this blog. So, please give your comment on how to improve this blog, in term of content and approach.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Techniques and Tips in Styling Grilled Steak

Careful and meticulous are the words in preparing this task. The task started up with looking for the best cut of steak – it can be a 'handsome looking' sirloin steak, rib-eyes or tenderloin or any cuts of beef that is 'perfect and good looking'. So your culinary skill is applied in finding a good ‘actor’ for this purpose.
What are needed for this task?
1. A nice cut of beef – sirloin, tenderloin, rib-eyes etc.
2. Iron rod or electrical grill marker.
3. Ruler.
4. Painting brush.
5. Sugar, caramel or soy sauce
6. Brown sauce / tomato / chilli / oyster sauce
7. Thickening agents – corn flour / wheat flour.
8. Selected vegetables
9. Potatoes or any starches.
10. Serving plate and cutleries
11. Printer syringe.
12. Props – according to the concept you want it to be. If you wanted to create a classical atmosphere a red wine with glass will be appropriate.
First, take a good and nice looking beef - portion size type will do. Put it on the back of a roasting tray. Make a mark on the tray alongside the steak at both side, using a ruler and a marker. Make sure the lines are parallel. Meanwhile heat up iron rod until it turn red (real hot). Press the hot iron rod onto the meat (or in other word brand the meat with the the hot iron rod) but do not press it too hard because it can cause a deep mark which does not present a real grill mark. Do it one at a time or the meat will stick to the rod when it turns cold. Do a 'x-cross' mark to give the meat a nice and perfect looking grill mark.
In a non-stick pan, heat up a little oil with a little bit butter and sprinkle with sugar. Let the sugar caramelized. Sear the steak and let slightly cook the meat surface (do not fully cook it). Do not over-cook it. Meanwhile, prepare the vegetable as an accompaniment to the steak. Choose bright color vegetables such as Broccoli, Carrot, Zucchini, Courgettes etc. Do not blanch it too long in hot water.
1. Put a bit of bicarbonate soda in the boiling water when blanching green vegetable. This will make green vegetable turn perfect green.
2. Add a bit of sugar and butter when blanching carrot. It will make carrot look crispy and shining.
3. Squeeze a bit of lemon juice or put a pinch of cream of tartar when blanching white vegetable such as cauliflower and white radish – it will make them looking nice looking white.
For the sauce, you may use brown sauces which are slightly thickened. Or you may also use oyster sauce which may resemble a brown sauce. Slightly thicken this sauce put some garnishing to it such as sliced cooked mushroom or crushed black peppercorn, this will give a body to the sauce. This is to resemble mushroom sauce or black pepper sauce, relatively.
Use your creativity and imagination before plating.
1. To put a sauce onto a plate you may use a syringe (syringe that are use to refill printer ink) and squeeze it onto a plate.
2. Or you may also use brush to brush a sauce onto a plate. This will give an artistic impression to you food.
3. To make your steak look stand-up. You may put a crumble aluminum paper behind it to raise the level.
4. Use brush to paint the steak with thick soy sauce. Look for uncooked spot and brush it.
Putting a sauce onto the plate using the syringe.
You may present it in many ways. Talk to your photographer on how you want your audience to look at it. A close-up, the finish whole dish (the whole plate) or may also seek advice from you photographer.

Food Styling Workshop , UiTM Penang

A workshop on Food Styling and Food Photography organized by the Faculty of Hotel and Tourism Management, UiTM Pulau Pinang was held on 9 - 10th December last week. I was given the responsibility to conduct the workshop. Participants of the workshop were lecturers and assistant lecturers of the culinary arts and foodservice department. The objective of the workshop are to give and share ideas on how the Food Styling Class / Course should be conducted, since UiTM Penang Campus will be offering the BSc (Hons) Culinary Arts Management, this coming July.Techniques, tips and ideas of how to present food for the camera are given to the participants. And some basic food photography techniques are also been taught - Alhamdulillah my little photography knowledge does help me a lot.
The workshop are conducted for 2 days, and breakdown into 2 session. The first day of the workshop started with a 2 hours theory - 'Introduction to Food Styling' and followed with a hands-on session. And, for the second day, 1 hour lecture on 'Identifying Props and Utensils, 1 hour lecture on 'Introduction to Food Photography' and followed with a hands-on session.

Participants were exposed to several techniques and tips in presenting food for camera. There were three hands-on task given. There were Roasted Chicken, Grilled Steak and Ice Cream (using Fake Ice-Cream as stand-in or an actor). Prior to the hands-on session, participant are given a brief introduction on how food should be presented, tehnicques were simulated using beverages, salads and crisps. Participants were also exposed on angle of shooting, lighting, and shadow in photography.
Detail pictures on techniques and tips will be posted later.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

More Photo Orang Asli.....

Here are some more pictures from our trip to the Gunung Benom Expedition 2009.

The orang Asli house at Kampong Berkoh............

Hassan, telling us his story about the history of the forest. "Do you know that in the past it is very easy for us to find food in the forest?" he said
"There are several type of tongkat ali, the one that has been commercialize is considered as second best to the orang asli. Let this secret of the forest be our asset to pass it to our future generation" said yufod with a smiling face.

Lompat of Cek Wong, Dr. Salim and me in the middle........

Ustaz yusof of Jah Hut orang Asli is very much concerned about the new generation of orang asli, religously as well as morally. There are too many negative influence need to be tackled. Is not easy to raise a family nowaday

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

The Orang Asli of Krau Wildlife Reserve

It was a very interesting outing for me early last November (8th - 12th), taking part in an expedition organized by Academic Science of Malaysia, Gunung Benom Expedition in Pahang. As we (Dr Salim and me) are interested to know how the Orang Asli prepares their food, how it taste and does their food helps them to keep healthy, so we took this opportunity to join the expedition.

It is really an eyes opening for me – the Orang Asli are full with hospitality, humble yet with great sense of responsibility to the mother nature and environment. Talking to them make me wonder, have we lost our so call eastern value.

Aziz, the Temuan orang asli works at the Institute Bio-Diversity (IBD), Krau Wild Reserve Office, Bukit Rengit. Friendly and jovial person, a Temuan from Selangor married to Cek Wong of Kuala Ganda.

Lompat from Cek Wong orang asli tribe, a shy but helpful.

Son to Edi Ahmad (an ex-soldier attached to Senoi Praaq unit in Pengkalan Hulu, Perak, a Jah Hut -picture below). Cant remember the boy name............

Edi Ahmad, Jah Hut orang asli demonstrating how to cook tapioca in a bamboo without using any water. The taste of 'ubi kayu' really out of this world. A very proud person and keen to shows the Jahu Hut jungle survival way of cooking.

A Jah Hut woman cooking the Jah Hut way, no oil, no santan purely using boiling method of cooking. Healthy way of cooking but lack in nutrition.