Friday, October 30, 2009

Carrots, onions tremble at the sound of my name

Wielding a knife with skill is the most basic need of the chef and even of the casual home cook. That's why they are the first skills taught, practiced and tested for at the California Culinary Academy.

My knife skills test was delayed from Oct. 9 because of a little gash I put in my left thumb practicing the day before, requiring an emergency room visit and five stitches.

Today, I will take the test -- 10 cuts on eight vegetables in 30 minutes. The cuts are part of classic French cooking, and all are designed to make the vegetables look nice. Several also have the function of ensuring that the veggies cook evenly by being the same basic shape and size.

Tune in later to read if I'm newly skilled or stitched again.


Thirty minutes flew by, yet I got the 10 knife cuts completed in fine fashion. Chef Tony's cumulative grade, based on up to five points for each cut, gave me an A.

Now I simply have to repeat that for next week's final practical exam, on Wednesday.

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