You don’t need a huge set of knives to have a well-stocked kitchen. In this video about knife basics, you’ll learn about the three knives to have on hand and how to use them, including a chef’s knife, a paring knife and a serrated knife.
Chef’s knives are super versatile, and when used properly, they do the work for you. Two important knife skills to learn are how to dice an onion and how to mince garlic.
- How to dice an onion
- Wrap your fingers around the handle, resting your thumb to the side of the knife, opposite your index finger.
- To keep the fingers and thumb of your free hand safe, curl them into your palm like claw. Place your knuckles flat on top of the onion resting them against the blade.
- First, slice the onion in half, through the root. This provides a sturdy surface to work with.
- Place the onion cut-side down.
- Next, make evenly spaced vertical cuts from root to stem without slicing through the root end. This holds the onion together until you’re finished dicing.
- Keep your fingers in the claw position, gradually moving as you slice.
- Next, make horizontal slices through the middle of the onion.
- Finish off your dicing by making cuts vertical in the opposite direction
- How to mince garlic
- Flatten the garlic first by placing your blade on top of the clove, with the sharp edge facing away from you. Place your hand on top of the blade and apply pressure. The skin will come right off the garlic clove.
- Now you have a flat, more even clove for mincing.
- Make a few slices in the clove. Then, hold the knife high with the tip of the blade pointed down and your free hand resting on top of the dull edge of the knife, mince the garlic using a rocking back-and-forth motion.
Paring knives are great for precision work, including cutting out cores, peeling fruits and vegetables and slicing smaller items like mushrooms.
Serrated knives are ideal for cutting delicate foods like tomatoes and for slicing breads and cakes.
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