Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Julienne

Do you know Julienne? Well, let me introduce you.

Julienne means to cut food into small matchstick strips. Julienne can also refer to the resulting shape.

For one style of julienne, slice the item thinly on a bias.


Keep the slices together as much as possible.


Cut the slices into thin strips.


Carrots, daikon radishes, seedless cucumbers, and zucchini can all be cut in this manner. This knife cut is particularly nice for cucumbers and zucchini as each julienne strip will have a bit on skin on either end and a bit of seed in the middle, making for a nice color contrast. It’s common in Asian cuisines. If you’ve ever had a Vietnamese noodle bowl, you’ve seen it.

For another, and probably more familiar, style of julienne, cut the item into 2 ½ to 3-inch lengths.


Working with one piece at a time, slice it into thin planks, about 1/8-inch thick.


Stack the planks together and cut into matchsticks.


Meats and vegetables can be cut in this manner. This is the method usually taught in culinary schools. Instructors take pleasure in torturing students by scrutinizing their julienned carrots for any pieces that aren’t a perfect 1/8-inch square on both ends.

The Asian style julienne is my favorite since it’s quick and easy and beautiful to behold.


Click here for information on how to julienne onions.

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