I love egg drop soup when eating out, but had never tried making it myself before, I think mostly because I was intimidated by the eggs. But after my successful poached egg adventures, I decided I was up for the challenge. Actually, this was a lot easier than it sounds. Obviously, the danger is that you don’t want the eggs to scramble. This was easy enough, I beat them well with a fork first in a separate bowl, and then kept the soup just barely below a simmer when I finally added in the eggs in a smooth slow pour while stirring. They ribboned beautifully.
For a start I used this egg drop soup recipe by Emeril. Emeril usually does a pretty good job at the basics, so I like to use Emeril as a reference point when I am trying something new. However, I about doubled the mushroom recipe and didn’t use any spinach (I didn’t have any).
Unfortunately, you can’t really see the ribbons of egg very well here because they didn’t exactly float like the scallions or mushrooms did. But they are in there I promise! And they were tasty.
As for photographing the soup, honestly it was a nightmare. I really need some better lighting. My place doesn’t allow for much incident light to filter in, and so I am forced to choose between lighting that is really too dark to be ideal (and thus having to use lamps that are way too yellow cause I don’t own studio quality lamps), or too direct to be ideal. As you can see clearly in these pics, I decided too direct lighting was the better for the pic, and as a result my green soup bowl appears to be white and glowing. I really have no idea what is going on with that. I even used a tripod.
Soup in general I think is hard to photograph. No real food styling tricks are possible because it’s liquid in a bowl. I tried to make the composition of the picture attractive but think it ended up less than stellar. I think the composition in this pic below is better than the first, but there was too much shadow. The first pic is closer up, but the bowl is still glowing. The soup doesn’t offer much by way of color either. Maybe it’s the soup, maybe it’s me. The original pic is worse, I did what I could in photoshop to help it. Any tips on how to improve this pic or how to photograph or properly style this soup?
I really just need a table with proper lighting near an accessible window and a method for diffusing the light. I had crafted a light box but with only daylight coming into my poorly lit place, I can’t angle it to get enough of the light inside it, and the subject ends up being even darker. I just need to buy the right equipment to properly devote to this. Oh the dreams of a poor grad student…