Monday, December 17, 2007

The Onion's Demise

Before I begin, I've got this post and two more saved up, but I don't want to post them all today, so check back tomorrow and the day after because i've got some good stuff saved up.

I don't think i've stated it, but when cutting, your action should be a slicing action, whether it be away from you or towards you; this gives you the best cuts, and makes it easy as well. Do not chop it like a guillotine, because the cut will never be straight like this.

So, on to the onion!
Any large knife is good for this one, French chef's or santoku.

To begin, cut off the blossom. If you're looking down from the top, it's about 1cm up from the blossom.

Now, cut off the root, but not too much, because this will hold it together as you go along.

Now, cut through the root and cut the onion in half.

After this, peel it, by taking off layers until there is no more brown. Taking off the bloom, root and slicing it in half make it so easy to peel.

Now, let's do half the onion as medium dice.

Cut the onion, as shown, but do not cut all the way through the root, so it keeps its shape

Now, take your knife and line up the blade so that you create perfect squares.

Curl up your fingers and cut through the onion towards the heel of your palm.

If your knife is sharp, you shouldn't have to put too much pressure into this action. When your knife is dull, you have to put a lot of effort into it, and then injury becomes more possible. Also, don't be afraid of the blade meeting the heel of your hand, unless you're doing a sawing motion, it won't cut your skin.

Now, cut it into cubes, doing a slicing action, not a guillotine.

Depending on the size of the onion, you will make two, maybe three cuts and you will be left with the root end.

Flip it over onto the long side, and cut off the rest, making sure to create 1/2 inch squares.

Not everything you create is perfect cubes, but there is nothing there bigger than a half inch square.

Now, julienne of onion with the other half.

Cut the root out as shown, angling your blade so the point cuts down to the board, and flip the knife over and do it again.

Now, you want to cut with the veins of the onion, and cut 1/4 inch strips.

When you cut half of the half, turn it around and start again from the other side.

You should be left with a bunch of 1/4 inch slices.

Break them up with your fingers, and you have julienne of onion.

Tomorrow, honing.


Adam said...

So for a small dice (for mirepoix), you would just make more cuts?

Crystal said...

When cutting then, do I move the knife in a down and away from me motion?

Liza said...

Do you have any tricks for eyes that sting and tear like crazy?