When I was in cooking school, we spent many a day practicing our knife skills. For every new cut we learned — from bruniose to macedoine to julienne — we diced and chopped our way to callous-covered fingers until all of our cuts were precisely the same size. We held our breath as the instructor leaned over our cutting boards, searching for just one tiny diced carrot that was even a hair larger or smaller than his tiny brothers and sisters.
While you won’t have a persnickety chef judging your chopping efforts at home (or will you?), it’s important when you’re preparing ingredients for a recipe that you cut them into pieces that are about the same size.
Why Size Matters
It looks nicer, but more importantly food cut at about the same size will cook in about the same time. If they’re seriously uneven, the smaller pieces will overcook, leaving the larger pieces undercooked.
A sharp knife makes it easier to cut with precision. Check out my tips for choosing a chef’s knife here.