How To Chiffonade – Basic Knife Skills, Part 1 (FAK Friday)

How To Chiffonade - Step By Step Tutorial | WillCookForFriends

Hello everyone!

This week’s FAK Friday is going to be a little different than usual. First off, I wanted to work on some basic knife skills (namely, how to chiffonade), but instead of just showing you the technique with photos, I thought I would put together a little video, as well.

That’s right, you heard me. A video.

I’ve always been amazed by other bloggers who use videos to help tell their stories, like this video from the White On Rice Couple, or this one from Call Me Cupcake. The idea has been in my head for I don’t know how long, but the reality of it always seemed a little daunting. To be honest with you, it still does. I don’t exactly have the right equipment or know-how to make good videos, but something came over me this afternoon, and I found myself compelled to shift my camera over to record mode.

It was more of a whim than a plan, really, but there I was anyway, recording my first video. Come to think of it, that’s pretty much how this blog started… I’d thought about it for ages, then all of a sudden I found myself making my first post. Sometimes the greatest steps we take are the ones just outside of our comfort zone!

Now, I know it isn’t perfect, but I’d love to hear what you think. Do you like the video / is it helpful / should I do more of them? Or should I pull my head out of the clouds and get back to reality. Be honest, I cane take it!

In case anyone has trouble viewing the video, or just prefers photo tutorials, I’ve included step-by-step instructions below the video. Let’s get to it!

How To Chiffonade

A chiffonade is just a fancy French word for a very simple knife technique used to make thin, ribbon-like slices. It is most commonly used with fresh herbs, or other delicate leafy greens. I’m using basil here, but sage, mint, sorrel, or other herb would work fine, too.

How To Chiffonade - Step By Step Tutorial | WillCookForFriends

Start with just a four or five leaves, and stack them up on top of each other, with any larger leaves on the bottom.

How To Chiffonade - Step By Step Tutorial | WillCookForFriends

Once your leaves are all stacked up, gently roll them unto a tight cylinder. Be careful not to press too hard while rolling, so as not to bruise the delicate leaves.

How To Chiffonade - Step By Step Tutorial | WillCookForFriends

Hold the bundle of leaves with one hand, and with the other slice the leaves into thin strips with a sharp, non-serrated knife. A sharp knife is best, because a dull blade can crush the greens, rather than make clean slices.

How To chiffonade - Step By Step Tutorial | WillCookForFriends

Gently separate the slices with your fingers, and you’re done! It’s a simple technique, but one I use all the time. Who doesn’t love little ribbons of herbs in their soup, or sitting atop their salad? It’s also a great way to cut a bunch of herbs at once, without running your knife endlessly through a loose pile of leaves.

…Plus you get to feel all fancy the next time you garnish a dish with a fresh chiffonade of something. Style points!

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6 Responses to How To Chiffonade – Basic Knife Skills, Part 1 (FAK Friday)

  1. Foodie Stuntman August 3, 2013 at 6:30 am #

    I can never chiffonade basil so thinly. Great job with the video!

  2. Jill August 5, 2013 at 12:43 am #

    It was perfect. Very pro looking, nothing extraneous. Let’s see more…

  3. shannon weber August 8, 2013 at 12:50 pm #

    my ONLY knife skill is the chiffonade. :) like i can chiffonade ALL DAY LONG, but that’s about the only thing i can do with ease in terms of knives. :) great post.

  4. movita beaucoup August 9, 2013 at 9:39 am #

    NOOOOOO! You can’t do video. Your photos are too pretty, so it’s not fair if you become all perfect at video too. It will disturb the balance of the blogging world.

  5. Sunday Morning Banana Pancakes August 9, 2013 at 3:28 pm #

    Nicely done- the video came out great!

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