Posted by: lisetta | May 14, 2008

Precision slicing

When I go out to eat, I often notice how beautifully sliced/diced/chopped ingredients are, imagining that the person cutting the vegetables uses a mandoline or food processor, yet realizing the more likely reality is that the prep cook simply uses his/her own knife skills.  

Knife skills are definitely not my strength. In my brief stint as a line cook in a macrobiotic vegan cafe, I spent hours cutting carrots and burdock roots ‘on the bi’ to ‘preserve their energy’, I recall wondering why the owner would refuse to use a tool for this sort of work. Energy is broken’ either way, so why not be efficient about it? 

Anyway, I’ve made penne with zucchini and saffron many times, yet never has the dish been as symmetrical as it was tonight. Though he spends very little time in the kitchen, it turns out that Dave has master knife skills. He cut the onion, zucchini and tomato tonight, into perfectly uniform pieces. Amazing. Here are a few pics:

While the color of the shot isn’t too great, if you look closely you can tell that the half moons are cut to perfection. 

In the next shot, take a look at how he arranged the tomatoes … and check out his Berkies in the background! 🙂

Coincidentally, Kate Murphy in the NY Times writes about knife skills in an article today. Check it out here. No matter what your skill level is in the kitchen, there’s always a higher level you can aspire to. 

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