Knife Skills 101

A visual guide to how to cut, chop, and smash like a pro.

Smashed (with knife heel) then minced - garlic cloves

Use in everything because garlic is life! The smaller the cuts the quicker it cooks. Use the widest part of a chef’s knife to cover the clove; press down to smash. Use the back part of the blade to go over the garlic in a sewing motion (try not to lift the knife off the board!).

Small diced - tomatoes

Salsa & nacho perfection. Trim the root end and quarter the tomato; Remove gel & seeds from tomato (save for soup stock or tomato sauce). Cut into ¼-inch strips, then cut crosswise into small dice.

Medium diced - onion

Create perfect cubes that cook evenly for soups and casseroles. Halve the onion through the root; use a sharp chef/santoku knife to cut in (but not all the way through!) in 1/2-inch layers; Turn the onion & cut in from the top (still leaving the root intact); turn again and cut through; diced onion will fall right onto your board!

Half moon - onion

Easy curved pieces for stir-fries & pickling. Cut off both ends, halve, peel off papery skin, cut crosswise a slight angle by the inch.

Julienne - onion

Thin strips for even cooking. Cut off both ends, halve, peel off papery skin (see half moon) cut crosswise into thin strips.


Bias – celery

You’re slicing and making it pretty at the same time. Instead of cutting straight across, turn your knife slightly on the diagonal and cut to create uniform angled sliced


Chiffonade - basil

You’re making herb ribbons! For pretty garnishes and saladsStack the herbs (largest at the bottom); Roll from large end into a tight log; Slice crosswise into strips; fluff with your hands.

Cubed - potato

For soup, stew, and deep-frying “Square off” the spud by trimming rounded edges on all sides to yield sharp angles. Cut lengthwise into strips; Then cut crosswise into cubes.

The Stir-Anything Wooden Utensil Set
The Stir-Anything Wooden Utensil Set

Grab the slotted spoon to stir and al dente-test pasta, the spatula for slicing and serving quiche and crumbles, and the spoon for everything else. Carved from olive wood that ages beautifully, these utensils also level up a tablescape—use them for serving salad, spicy slaw, and spaghetti. Olive wood has a natural oil finish, for stain resistance, a little shine and a lot of use. Use the flat, spatula-style utensil to divvy and serve quiche, brownies, berry crumbles and other treats best served warm.

Cravings: Hungry for More
Cravings: Hungry for More

The second Cravings book, Cravings: Hungry for More, is a slightly lighter-and-brighter version of what was in the first cookbook. But there's still cheese. "I wanted to create food that wasn't just comforting, but that would bring actual joy to the dinner table," Chrissy says, "and these recipes really showcase the healing power of food.

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