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Knife Skills: Cutting a Chiffonade of Basil

How to cut herbs into fine shreds for a beautiful garnish

by

from Fine Cooking
Issue 51

A basil or mint chiffonade (which means "made of rags" in French) is a flavorful, beautiful accent for dishes like pastas and fruit salads. Here's how to cut a chiffonade:

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    1. Stack about ten leaves into a neat pile. With practice, you may find that you can handle more than ten at a time.
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    2. Roll the pile of leaves lengthwise into a fairly tight cigar shape.
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    3. Use your sharpest knife to slice across the cigar. The closer together the slices, the finer your chiffonade will be.
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    4. Fluff the chiffonade with your fingertips to separate the shreds. The cut edges will darken quickly, so use the chiffonade as soon as possible.

Photos: Scott Phillips

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