Positioning and Using a Knife

Jacques Pépin's chopping tips.

Jacques Pépin's chopping tips.

Read the transcript of this video
Now the proper usage of a knife is to grab the knife and glue it to your finger. Now your fingers are never this way or this way. And that thumb here, if it's in front, the tip will go. So it's in the back. People use it more on this side, more in front, doesn't really matter where it's there. I can look at you and chop because that knife is glued to my fingers. That hand is just a dummy going up and down. That hand over everything. I push the knife where ever I push the knife is going to go, I don't really have to look at it. It's so difficult but you have to learn how to do it. Down and forward usually. Practice with a cucumber. A nice way of practicing. You empty a cucumber with a spoon. You go on once side, you go back on the other side rather than try to go totally in the center will break the cucumber. You go down and forward. Down and forward. It's all in the process of cutting. Down and forward, down and forward. And eventually all backward, or forward, but there is that motion of cutting. If I slide the knife against my finger, if I don't move that finger, nothing happens. That finger starts moving [INAUDIBLE] A dancer. And if I move very slowly, very slowly I'm going to have very, very thin slice here. And I'm going to have extremely thin slice cuz I moved very, very slowly. If I move a little faster, very faster, the point is that I will end up from A slice like this to like this, to like this, doesn't matter. You hear the same sound, it's a question of moving your finger back and forth. When you use something like parsley you want to gather it into a The bunch and slice it again, the same thing we did before. [BLANK_AUDIO] Then gather it together again. Now, often people will put the palm of their hand on the table and cut it this way, which is fine for certain things. Parsley is fiber. The proper way is to have the front of the knife first because when the down Go, you will automatically add that motion of cutting. [SOUND] So, this is the proper way of chopping parsley, with that motion. That's it. When you cut a, an onion, again you cut it in half and you go with the onion, you go far away and again cut. You see in that motion. And then you wanna cut across this way. And finally. [SOUND] Again, there's some technique to get the smallest possible chopped onion this way. If the knife is sharp, you won't cry. Because you won't release too much of the sulfuric acid, which makes you cry. Like when you cut bread for example. Often people will put their knife and apply pressure on it and here is what happens. You crush the bread together but you have to twist, you go down and forward, down and forward. Really using the bread from here to there. That motion, rather than crushing it. That's the basic principle of the knife.
Sponsored Stories
Positioning and Using a Knife


Advertisement