10 knife techniques for cutting vegetables
Knives are our best friends in the kitchen. It can make long boring works enjoyable by accelerating the task, especially in case of vegetable cutting. Getting yourself equipped with the basic knowledge of cutting vegetables will serve you in the long run.
There are some well-known techniques to use a knife for cutting veg items in the kitchen, which make cooked vegetables look attractive and taste better. Indistinctly cut vegetables don’t taste as good as they are expected and leafy garnishing even makes the meal look uglier.
Here, I describe 10 basic knife skills which can be used while cutting vegetables:
1. Julienning: Julienning is a kind of cut made which turns the vegetable into a pile of the long thin strip-like French fries. Chefs all over the world mainly use it for heightening the presentation of veg items. Julienne cut vegetables are also called “Matchsticks” for their thin long shape. Cut the side parts at first, then cut from the middle and another center cut in the cross-section.
2, Tournee: Tournee cut vegetables are oblong shaped like footballs. Used for vegetables like Carrots, Potatoes, Squash etc. Tourney vegetables have seven uniform sides which make it oblong shaped. A paring knife or tourney is preferred. At first, the sides are trimmed off at a length of 2 inches then the oblong shape is given on the surface.
3. Mincing: Mincing means finely chopping vegetables. A crucial and necessary cutting technique. It helps vegetables to infuse flavors evenly throughout the dish. At first, trim the stem cautiously, then cut the veg lengthwise laying the knife in parallel. Now, rotate the vegetables by 90 degrees and chop it off.
4. Batonnet: Batonnet means cutting vegetables shaped as “Little sticks”. These are measured .25 inches in height, width, and length. The vegetables are cut into 6 cm long pieces with the thickness of 6 mm. This technique is used for vegetables which can be used raw, like Carrot, Zucchini or Cucumber.
5. Peeling: Despite being an optional one, Peeling is a very widely used cutting technique. You must use it for vegetables like Eggplants or cucumbers, which have skins that are difficult for humans to digest. Insert the tip of the knife under the skin and then peel away the skin in a circular motion.
6. Chiffonade: Leafy green veggies like Spinach and Basil are cut into thin and uniformly long strips for garnishing meals. You can just stack the leaves, roll them tightly and then, chop them off with regular swingy hand motions.
7. Dicing: Dicing technique ensures balanced and controlled cooking and adds a consistent uniform texture to your favorite dish. At first, peel off the skin and lay of the shallot on the cutting board. Then cut horizontal slices without cutting all through the shallot of Onions or Garlic.
8. Chopping: Easier and vastly used cutting technique. Your main goal is to have vegetables in proper shape and size cooking. You chop vegetables if you want to make a sauce for the dinner. The size may vary from 1/8th to 1/16th of an inch. In most cases, taste, and look of a dish depending on how well the vegetables are chopped.
9. Slicing: Slicing is common for potatoes, cucumbers, and eggplants which are used in dishes in round shapes. All you have to do is just peel the skin, then make straight horizontal cuts simultaneously. The thickness of the slices depends on the dish you are cooking.
10. Cubing: Cubing is sort of a modified form of dicing. The length, width, and thickness must be equal and uniform. Cuboidal cuts give a nice texture and look for your dish.
Children are often intrigued by the look of the dish. These techniques will grow interested in eating veggies among your children. That’s a lot of any parent, especially working parents. Best of luck.