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Chopping herbs may sound easy enough, but there is a right and a wrong way. Many people over chop the herbs and are left with half the flavour going into the chopping board instead of their food. Below I give a few tips to prevent you from making the same mistake.

When Chopping Soft Herbs

    1. The trick is to have the knife contact the herbs as little as possible and prevent it from pounding or bruising the leaves and removing all the juice and flavour from the soft leaves.
    2. To do so, bunch the herbs up into a small pile that you can easily hold together with the fingers of one hand.

Chopping Herbes step_1_3

    1. Then whilst holding the little pile of herbs curl your fingertips underneath your fingers and place the side of the knife blade against those fingers and gently lift and rock the knife.

Chopping Herbes step_1_4

    1. By doing this you will obtain a very fine cut throughout the herbs without having to punish them with continual chopping and pounding.

Chopping Herbes step_1_5

When Chopping Hard Herbs

    1. Strip the herbs from their woody stems.

Chopping Herbes step_2_1

    1. Make a pile of the stripped leaves.
    2. Hold the front of the knife down with one hand.

Chopping Herbes step_2_3

  1. Hold the handle of the knife with the other hand and chop working your way from left to right and then right to left.
  2. Try to keep the leaves in a pile to minimize the amount of contact with the knife.

Paul Hegeman

Paul is a personal Chef to exclusive Sydney clients and is also our most frequently contributing writer. Paul was born in The Netherlands and moved to Canada at a very young age. Experience with traditional European meals at home and the diverse multicultural influence of foods in Canada gave Paul a great appreciation for different culinary styles. Over the years Paul traveled extensively and worked at every level of professional kitchens, from the deep fryer in the local burger joint, to the Head Chef in Five Star Hotels. He now resides full time in Sydney, Australia with his wife and their children. You will find his recipes emphasize natural, uncomplicated flavours and fresh ingredients such as those found in Mediterranean and South East Asian cuisines.

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