Cutting boards are a requirement for any solid home or restaurant chef, but there’s a good variety of them (a surprising amount for something that equates to “flat piece of material”) and some rules you need to follow with them. With some simple guidelines, you can maximize the use and lifespan of your cutting board.
Plastic will always be the best; you can put something hot on it and it won’t be negatively affected, sure, but the most important reason for using a plastic cutting board is purely for safety. Wood boards can get cuts that can harbor bacteria and glass can shatter (alongside being bad for your knives), but plastic can be washed, abused, and brought back for more.
Avoid Food Contamination
No real issue if you’re going from cutting onions to peppers to carrots, and plan to throw them all in the same roux. The real issue comes in when poultry, or any food that will leak a flavor into others, gets involved. If you’ve got to chop poultry and other ingredients, you should either do the poultry first and clean the board thoroughly, or just do it after the other ingredients (onions aren’t going to make the chicken unsafe).
1 tablespoon of bleach to a gallon of water will help sanitize boards (using unscented bleach only), and no matter how well the board is cleaned, it’ll have to be replaced after time due to various nicks, dents, and cuts. If you must use wood, make sure to dry it after you clean it.… Read the rest
Knives are, by all accounts, a confusing affair. You could just grab anything sharp or serrated and start cutting away, but results would be varied. Breads would be crushed, hands would be sliced, and tomatoes would just become a liquid mess. Knowing the difference between them, and their intended purposes, is a requirement for any good kitchen.
The chef’s knife is all-purpose, sharp, and heavy enough to cut through bone. The curve in the knife allows users to rock back and forth on a cutting board, allowing for precise dicing.
In concept, it’s a smaller chef’s knife: all-purpose and sharp. It won’t nearly be as heavy as a chef’s knife, but it can get more intricate work done, such as de-veining shrimp, taking out seeds, and more intricate work than the large swaths of cutting for the larger one.
It does what it says; these long, narrow bladed knives are for working with meat, fish, and poultry. Stiff boning knives are good for meat and pork, while flexible ones are for poultry and fish.
Carving knives are usually shorter and wider than slicing knives, and are brought out whenever you need to take off thin cuts of meat from large dishes, such as a turkey dinner for Thanksgiving.
A cleaver is, beyond being used in countless horror movies, used to cut large chunks of meat with force, while also allowing a flat side great for crushing garlic. It’s not as sharp, as the hammering motion is intended to separate via force, not slicing.
Most home chefs may have never used a butcher knife. It’s for dressing and butchering large chunks of meat, and isn’t really suitable for the everyday kitchen.
Two serrated blades motorized together slice quicker … Read the rest
The definition of tools of the trade as a noun is any instrument, implement, device or piece of machinery that is needed to expertly and correctly conduct an occupation, trade or profession. It should be obvious that in the food preparation industry, for a Chef, knives qualify as a tool of the trade.
Upon graduating from culinary academies, a graduate will probably have their set of basic knives that travel with them everywhere. There is one rule that is pretty standard among chefs: You do not share knives!
When traveling, chefs need to take precautions to wrap their knives well, protecting them from shifting and bumping, and to protect the edges of the blades. Some chefs may wrap their knives in towels, and others wrap them between articles of clothing or pieces of leather. Some may even have specially designed cases.
There are five basic knife needs and/or tools that any chef must have. As they progress in their careers, they will probably include dozens more of experimental and specialty tools, but with these five knives, most any meal can be prepared.
Knife Steel (or Sharpening Steel)
This has a handle like a long knife, but instead of a blade, there is a circular steel rod. Not only does it sharpen knives, but it keeps the blades aligned by reshaping the rough edges resulting from use. A good chef uses the knife steel before and after preparations on one of his trusty knives.
Serrated Utility Knife
Serrated edges are a must for cutting bread (especially with a hard crust), other foods with hard skins, and for very juicy vegetables such as tomatoes.
As the name implies, this cleaves and debones large cuts of meat that need to be sectioned in hefty pieces as opposed to being cut precisely.
When it comes to great food, texture is as important as taste. From slicing and dicing to chopping and mincing, a great cutlery set
can transform any ingredient into a culinary delight that looks and feels as good on the palate as it tastes. Knives are one of the most crucial elements of any kitchen, yet so many of us do not know what to look for when purchasing them for our restaurants and homes. Here are three key factors to consider when shopping for knives.
Shape and Size
Cutlery comes in a variety of shapes and sizes, all designed for specific purposes. Every professional chef and home cook should own five basic types of knives.
Professional chef knives make slicing, dicing, and chopping large amounts of food easy. Although their blades are generally 6 to 14 inches long and about 1 ½ inches wide, chef knives vary when it comes to blade shape. Two of the most common chef knife blade shapes are French and German. French
blades are straight with a curved tip while German blades feature a curve throughout the cutting edge.
Paring knives are constructed with small, sharp blades. These types of knives are generally used for peeling produce, coring fruit, and slicing smaller foods.
Carving knives are ideal for cutting large pieces of meat like hams, roasts, and whole turkeys. Built with a long thin blade approximately 8 to 15 inches in length, carving knives are excellent for creating thin slices of meat for sandwiches.
Unlike chef, paring, and carving knifes, which feature a smooth cutting surface, utility knives have serrated edges. Very versatile, utility knives can be used to slice a variety of foods.
Bread knives are designed to quickly and easily slice all types of bread. With serrated blades that are between 6 … Read the rest