Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Knife Skills

There is a new review of Norman Weinstein's Mastering Knife Skills up on Slate. It immediately caught my attention because my knife skillz are terrible, and it's one of the things that slows me down the most in the kitchen. Seriously... whatever you think the prep time is, you better double it if I'm dicing your veggies. I've been meaning to sign of for a course at Cambridge Adult Ed, but $123 is a lot of money for two classes(6 hours of instruction though), and if there is a book/dvd that does as good a job or better, then why not get that?

Unfortunately, while she says it does a good job of explaining some solid techniques for her knife ignorant husband, she seems to indicate nothing beats being taught in person... so maybe it'll be the knife course after all, though I'll probably at least check the book out in the bookstore.

I do want to highlight one thing she mentions in the review, and that's how to dice an onion. I actually learned the technique from Julia Child's book a few months ago and I have to say that it is, indeed, THE BEST THING EVAR. Doing a mince of an onion was just not something I was really capable of until I learned how to do it this way. It's definitely easy for even a beginner to comprehend and do reasonably well. She links to a crap Martha Stewart video that I got too irritated to even wait out to see the onion dicing, so I thought I'd give you a YouTube that is both beautiful and simple in illustration of technique.