This is one of my favorite dishes to make. Each ingredient adds a specific flavor and creates a bold, rich and healthy dish. It’s a complete meal made of vegetables, shrimp and rice. You can actually taste each element. The tomato adds savory saltiness, jalapeños and roasted green chilies give just the right amount of spice, manzanilla olives add a buttery brininess, and the tangy lime juice balances all this out with a little citrus. Garnish with fresh cilantro and avocado to round it all out. Most of the flavor sensations, besides sweetness, are covered. I honestly can’t think of a better combination of ingredients and flavors in such a simple, yet flavorful meal.
This dish is highly adaptable and very forgiving. I’ve never actually measured the ingredients until I decided to turn it into a written recipe. If you want, add more jalapeño to make it spicier, or less lime for less tanginess. Use this recipe as a starting point and modify it any way you like. It’s a fun dish because you can literally throw all the elements in a pan and just let the flavor meld together. It practically makes itself. It’s also good with chicken or a white fish such as tilapia, instead of shrimp.
I shot this in natural light at 1/160 sec, f/ 1.8, ISO 400 .
Sauce-based dishes with chopped ingredients are often difficult to photograph. Once it’s all cooked together the viewer may not be able to recognize what’s in the dish. You have to decide before plating, and often before cooking, how you are going to photograph the final dish. You may need to chop extra ingredients and save for final presentation, or chop them larger than you normally would in cooking so they can be easily seen in the dish. A few good techniques include adding chopped ingredients or garnishes on top, or placing whole ingredients in the background of your photo. If a dish includes cilantro, add some whole leaves on top of the dish or on the plate. The avocado and lime are important elements as well, so I used those next to the dish to show the viewer, while adding more color and structure to the scene. Served over rice shows how to present the final meal. If your dish features shrimp, chicken or any other main ingredient, make sure at least one or two pieces stand out in your photograph. Use these techniques to beautifully present your dishes for guests, even if you aren’t planning on photographing your food.
– Manzanilla olives are green olives, stuffed with pimentos.
– The sauce portion of this dish freezes well. Cook extras and freeze. Just add more shrimp later.
– This dish is similar to soup, as it will thicken up as is sits. It is also great for leftovers, and the flavor is even better the next day once it melds to together.
– Can replace shrimp with white fish or chicken breast