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The Whys and Hows of Chopping vs. Mincing

Knowing how to cook starts with knowing how to chop.

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Instructions:

Chopping.

1. To chop, grasp cleaver or French chef's knife with one hand; rest the other hand on the top front for control. Chop in large, uniform pieces, using quick, heavy rocking motions.

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Mincing.

2. To mince, finely chop food into very small pieces, using the same technique as for chopping; use for garnishes or sautéing, when ingredients should almost disappear into a sauce.

To Julienne.

3. To julienne, first slice food into 1/4-inch-thick strips. Stack and cut into 1/8-inch-thick spears. To julienne vegetables, take a slice off the bottom so the food doesn't move as you chop.

Dicing.

4. To dice, cut food into slices and then cut evenly and squarely into 1/8- to 1/4-inch cubes.

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