Recipe & Food Styling | Shahi Mushroom Curry – To jump off the cliff and learn how to make wings on the way down..
The lessons you learn the hard way are always the ones that stick…
All along, and ever since I was first exposed to commercial food styling shoots, it really hit me to think that how smooth my transition would have been had there been someone to guide me through the nitty gritty of food styling.
Back then, I was fairly new to the commercial world of food styling and had no mentor whom I could observe or assist. I had to jump off the cliff and learn how to make wings on the way down 🙂
I had to work extremely hard and try to master the tricks of trade by actual experience, on the sets and studios of various television and still shoots. Not to forget the long hours of sitting in front of laptop, gazing at food pictures and reading articles on food styling during wee hours.
As I fell into my groove and gain more confidence, I found that food styling is one of the most satisfying career I could have opted at anytime of my life.
However, I gained knowledge and practical experience the hard way and always wanted to share it with others whenever I could.
I had already taken workshops and classes couple of years back for professional photographers as well as college students.
It was such an uplifting experience, it made me feel happy and boosted my self-esteem as a food stylist.
But outdoor shoots, home projects, family commitments, travel and blog keep me completely engaged and I often struggle to keep my work-life balance sane.
I had been getting several phone calls and messages from a couple of photography institutes to take up classes on food styling but lack of time made me put them at hold.
After ignoring for almost a year, I finally decided to take up the call from ICAT design and media college to take up the class on food styling. It was a 2 day classroom session for 2nd and final year students of photography.
I had to cancel a television shoot for this class..but no regrets, I enjoyed spending my time preparing slides and notes on food styling for students.
Interacting with a bunch of enthusiastic students was a wonderful experience. It was a fruitful day of learning and sharing about food, photography and styling, for all of us.
But the biggest and the most important thing I learned during this student teaching session is to ‘be confident‘.
How true is the saying..”An investment in knowledge always pays the best interest.” ~ Benjamin Franklin
Shahi Mushroom Curry
Shahi mushroom curry is one another variation I often cook at home where nuts are used to make the base gravy. This recipe comes second to my Charmagaz mushroom curry which uses several seeds and yogurt for gravy.
- 10-12 button mushrooms
- 10-12 cashew nuts
- 1/2 cup milk
- 1/2 cup of fresh peas
- 1 large tomato
- 1 large onion
- 1 tsp. ginger-garlic paste
- 2 tbsp. oil
- Salt to taste
- 2 tsp. red chilly powder
- 2 tsp. coriander powder
- 1/2 tsp. turmeric powder
- 1/2 tsp. fennel powder
- 3 cardamoms
- 1’ cinnamon stick
Method; Soak cashew nuts in milk for 15 minutes and ground into fine paste.
Peel and finely slice onion and grate the tomato.
Wash mushrooms very well and dice into small pieces.
Heat oil in a wok and add cardamom pods and cinnamon stick.
Add sliced onion and sauté it till it turns brown.
Add ginger-garlic paste, grated tomato, chilly powder, coriander powder, turmeric powder, fennel powder, salt and sauté for 5-6 minutes on medium heat
Add mushrooms, peas and cook for another 2 minutes.
Add cashew paste, cover the wok with a lid and let it simmer for 4-5 minutes.
Serve the creamy shahi mushroom curry with plain rice or any Indian flat-bread of your choice.