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Maybe I am late to the party? But I come bearing gifts!

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posted on Sep, 20 2016 @ 07:26 PM
Raise your hand if you are a cook? I have been an amateur chef in my own kitchen for many years and I have come to the conclusion that we make it harder than it needs to be when it comes to preparation of our vegetables, at least I have decided to do things differently.

I use to be OCD when it came to cutting onions, carrots, peppers, potatoes, broccoli, cauliflower, tomatoes or garlic. I use to get the cutting board out and strategically hold a knife in that very safe cutting stance and get myself psyched to attack meticulously. I would pretend I was some famous chef and use those techniques we have all seen.

First, let me just go to the pre-prep part. Peeling.

I don't peel potatoes, ever. I just place them in hot water and let them soak until I decide to cut them.

Carrots, no peeling, I do the same, place in hot water. Unless you like them cold in your salad. Then use the grater.

Tomatoes, it depends what they are going to be used for. If I am making a sauce, I remove the skin by boiling them first and then after a cool down, just take my fingers and peel away the skin. This also, depends what type of tomato, roma, I never peel.

Garlic, some people like to press, I don't, I will boil a bulb, and then remove the skin. I do not remove the core.

Onions, I soak then in ice cold water until ready to remove the skin, then instead of cutting the skin off, which almost always waste precious onion, I just remove the skin with my fingers, this might require a tiny cut first at the top, but only the core head. I do not want to cry!

The peeling and pre-prep is done, now how to get them into the size pieces you want? Most people will use a knife to do this, me, I have come up with a different method when it comes to onions, peppers, broccoli and cauliflower; I simply tear them apart with my fingers piece by piece. The OCD me used to spend so much time worrying about cutting them in nice little pieces, no more, now I just enjoy making things simpler. There are some bigger parts that can not be torn, so those go into the compost pile. Also, when it comes to the peppers, with the exception of that little nub on top, it all gets used, seeds go in, especially if I am making a spaghetti sauce.

This method is so much more efficient, for me at least. Who cares about making perfect cuts. My meals are more enjoyable and I have fewer cuts on my hands in the process.

Carrots and garlic and potatoes still get cut with a small a paring knife into whatever pieces they are cut while holding them between my 4 fingers and thumb, right into the pot or bowl or pan (w/olive oil). Tomatoes are usually for my salads or spaghetti sauce so they get sliced with a normal tomato slicer or thrown in whole (for sauces).

One more little tip, instead of using a knife to spread, try using a spoon instead!

posted on Sep, 20 2016 @ 07:37 PM
a reply to: searcherfortruth

Some good stuff there! I will try your method with the onions, when I DO decide to cook again.

I have always just 'torn' the broccoli for personal consumption. I like to bring home a few heads of it from the store and wash it really well and then plop it in a ziploc bag. I love to snack on it at work at my desk. Rather than cut it up ahead of time I can just tear off what I want. I just love raw broccoli.

Off topic memory, my kiddos used to call the trees on the hillside broccolis and vice versa. The broccolis were little trees.

I don't peel potatoes anymore. I tell myself that the healthy stuff is in the skin so I just scrub real well and done. I think I am just being lazy.

I sometimes miss those days of cook outs and parties and all day in the kitchen!

posted on Sep, 20 2016 @ 07:39 PM
a reply to: searcherfortruth

I peel most of those all of the time. Tomato sauce with the skins on is nasty so they are always peeled. For other dishes I may leave them on but it depends. If I am making mashed potatoes or potato puree the skins need to come off. Usually I leave the skins on carrots for braising but I will peel them for use as a side dish.

Garlic is always peeled unless I cut the head off, drizzle it with oil and then bake it to make soft and nutty.

edit on 20-9-2016 by AugustusMasonicus because: Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn

posted on Sep, 20 2016 @ 08:43 PM
Thanks for the tips

posted on Sep, 20 2016 @ 09:30 PM
I always thought the skins gave a good texture to the mashed taters, so I leave them.

posted on Sep, 20 2016 @ 10:12 PM
a reply to: JDeLattre89

I always thought the skins gave a good texture to the mashed taters, so I leave them.

I do that too, but only if I'm using baby spuds (red or white)... smashed taters with sauteed garlic and onions. Nummies.

Also if I'm making tater salad, I usually leave the skin on for some nice colour variation there too.

Now I'm craving mashed taters with tons of butter...


posted on Sep, 20 2016 @ 10:16 PM
a reply to: CranialSponge

I might have some mashed potatoes for night breakfast.

posted on Sep, 20 2016 @ 10:35 PM
New York restaurant cook here, French trained. If you have a sharp knife you will not cry cutting onions. If you have a dull knife then you will be pulverizing it and crushing its cell walls.

ones taillage or knife cuts are important for a few reasons. Even cooking times. If more than one person is prepping the veg then they can be the same size and shape. It's pleasing to the eye.

Happy cooking

posted on Sep, 20 2016 @ 11:35 PM
i throw aromatics and herbs in the magic bullet.

posted on Sep, 21 2016 @ 12:41 AM
Cooking is an art.
If you're going for appearance, then that's beautiful.
If you're going for textures, contrasts, complexities, depth: then that is wonderful.
A fresh fish cooked by the lakeside on your campfire, or an unexpected free meal from a friend: it's always perfect.
Chunked, ripped, or very carefully sized: if your heart and care are put into it; it will be perfect.

posted on Sep, 21 2016 @ 09:36 AM
I use kitchen scissors for cutting some veges and meats. A good sharp pair in the kitchen is necessity for me.
My mother has arthritis and has issues with using knives so she uses kitchen scissors or tears up the veges in pieces. Her meals are not very pretty but always tasty!
A good tip for garlic if using in cooking is to place a unpeeled garlic bulb in a small oven safe bowl and heat in oven at 200-300 for about 30 minutes. You've got an awesome garlic flavored oil to use for whatever. You can pick up a section of the bulb and squeeze it and the little clove will come out. You can store on the counter in an airtight container. We use this method at our pizzeria. I use the garlic and oil on everything!

posted on Sep, 21 2016 @ 10:39 AM
a reply to: sassymcsnickerson

Or you can do the same with peeled garlic. Garlic confit. The oil will allow you to safely store the garlic in a refrigerator for weeks.

posted on Sep, 22 2016 @ 05:56 PM
Good tips, thank you! I do same with onions and garlic btw. But will try your way with potatoes and carrots, thanks!

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