Food Photography, Presentation and Knife Skills

In my previous blog I talked about the Vegan Natural Chef course I have enrolled in. The chef’s course is divided into five modules: One of which is Chef Techniques; which, amongst other things, includes knife skills, food photography and food presentation.

Over the next couple of weeks, I hope to update you all on the classes I have had so far; sharing with you some recipes we do in class and those I have created for my assignments.

Jump To Recipe – Rice Paper Rolls with Chili Dip

Our Food Photography lecture was by Matt Inwood. Matt specialises in phone photography and Instagram workshops. (Matt Inwood’s Instagram is @matt_inwood)

Here are some photos I took with my phone; using different backdrops and styling.


This is a lovely recipe from our class, it is both vegan and raw. The knife skills used were: jullienne, which is a culinary knife cut in which the food item is cut into long thin strips, similar to matchsticks; brunoise, which is where the food item is first jullienned, then turned a quarter turn and diced, producing cubes of about 3 millimeters or less.

Rice Paper Rolls

These rice paper parcels are nutritious, quick and fun to make whether a starter, snack or main course. Once you’ve mastered the basic recipe, you can get creative with all your favourite ingredients, combining great flavours, colours and textures. The ultimate fast food.

Makes 8 Rolls
8 rice paper rounds
1/3 large cucumber, julienned
1 red pepper, julienned
1 carrot, peeled & julienned
100g bean sprouts
30g coriander, finely chopped
30g fresh mint, roughly torn
15g raw peanuts, finely chopped
Dipping Sauce
2 spring onions, finely chopped
1 tsp red chili, brunoise
1 shallot, brunoise
4 tbsp rice wine vinegar
4 tbsp lime juice
2 tbsp coconut aminos
½ tsp brown rice syrup
1 tbsp fresh mint, finely chopped
1 tbsp fresh coriander, finely chopped

  1. Make the dipping sauce buy combining all the ingredients together, leave to one side to infuse.
  2. For the rolls, place all the fresh ingredients, except the mint and the coriander in a large bowl. Add two tablespoons of the sauce and toss to combine.
  3. Soak one rice paper in a large shallow dish filled with lukewarm water for 30 seconds until soft and pliable.
  4. Remove the rice paper and lay flat on a chopping board. Pat dry with paper towel if necessary.
  5. Take a small bunch of the vegetable mixture and lay it out in the centre of the paper. Top with a few pieces of the fresh herbs.
  6. To roll, fold over both sides of the paper into the centre of the vegetables. Then take the bottom edge of the paper roll and pull over the vegetables and roll up the vegetables to the top edge of the rice paper.
  7. Repeat with the remaining rolls.
  8. Serve the rolls with the dipping sauce on the side.

Allergens: nuts, peanuts

Source: Adapted for Natural Chef


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