Vegetables and fruits are rich in vitamins and nutrients which are essential to preserve while cutting and cooking them. It is also important to note that most parts of these fruits and vegetables can be added to dishes to enhance their flavour. A large number of hotels and restaurants actually use the ends of carrots, broccoli stems, and bok choy to make stock and add them to dishes. Which is why it is essential to know how to properly chop vegetables and utilise them fully.
Some important facts to keep in mind:
*Vegetables must be rinsed and dried before use.
*Make sure to use a sharp knife.
*There should be a separate chopping board for vegetables.
*Always pick the vegetables with the strongest smell, like garlic or onion, when chopping them.
Below are a few ways to ensure minimum wastage and maximum yield when cutting vegetables:
Place the bell pepper at a 180 degree position and cut off its bottom and top parts and keep in a separate bowl. The top cap can be removed with a finger leaving a hole in the circumference of the upper part. Now cut the bell pepper vertically, deseeding it. Once it is cut into half, further chop in into strips or dices, and use as per convenience. “Remember to always cut a bell pepper with the skin facing the chopping board else there will be a water loss even if the knife is sharp. The top and bottom parts can be further chooped, maximizing the yield,” says chef Arjun Chadha, Culinary Affaire.
Tomato should also be cut in the same way as bell peppers. But ensure that you remove the tomato’s eye with the tip of an all-purpose knife. Deseeded tomatoes are used in continental cuisine, while its pulp can be pureed and added to many curries.
Zucchini or Courgettes
Zucchini is a member of the cucumber family and can be chopped in many ways. Once the head and tail parts of the vegetable are chopped off, they can either be cut into cylindrical shape measuring 3 cm, diced into cubes or even as julienne and added to pastas and salads.
You can even slice zucchini using a peeler and toss them in a pan in olive oil and eat after sprinkling some salt and pepper. Since the seeds are not to be discarded, it it considered as a vegetable that gives maximum yield.
It is important to thoroughly wash spinach at least 3-4 times in water. After pat drying them, chop off the stems and keep them aside. They can be pureed along with the spinach for maximum yield. If you are blanching the spinach, adding a pinch of salt and sugar to boiling hot water retains the greenness.
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