The Importance of Properly Cutting Food for an Enjoyable Meal

Are you confused about how to correctly cut different types of food such as meat, shrimp, and squid? If so, this article has the answers you're looking for. Read on for some helpful cutting tips.

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Proper food preparation is crucial in cooking, as it can greatly impact the appearance and taste of the final dish. Each type of food requires specific cutting techniques to achieve the desired results. Here are some helpful tips for preparing various types of seafood and meat:

Squid:

Start by using a thin and sharp knife to remove the black membrane on the squid’s body. Then, cut the squid in half lengthwise. Tilt the knife at a 45-degree angle and lightly score diagonal lines on the squid’s body, creating a diamond pattern with each line about 3mm apart. Repeat this process with the remaining pieces of squid. After scoring, you can cut the squid into bite-sized pieces. This technique not only enhances the visual appeal of the squid after cooking, but also helps it absorb flavors more effectively.

Image 1: Remove the black membrane on the squid's body

Image 2: Score the squid's body

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Image 4: The scored squid pieces

Shrimp:

Use a clean pair of scissors to cut off the shrimp’s tail. Below the shrimp’s head, use the scissors to make a horizontal halfway cut across the shrimp. From the cut, insert the scissors and make a vertical cut along the shrimp’s body towards the tail to butterfly the shrimp. Refer to the image below for a visual guide.

Image 5: Remove the shrimp's tail

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Image 8: Remove the shrimp's vein

Image 9: Score the shrimp's back to prevent curling

Image 10: The best way to cut shrimp

Beef:

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To ensure tender meat, it is important to slice beef against the grain, rather than with the grain. The slices should ideally be the same thickness as the knife. To achieve this, tilt the knife while slicing to make thinner slices. It’s also beneficial to refrigerate the beef for a few hours before slicing to firm it up.

Pork:

When slicing pork, also cut it against the grain for tenderness. Unlike beef, hold the knife straight and adjust the thickness of the slices based on the desired dish. For stir-frying, cut the pork into moderate-sized pieces, while larger or square pieces are more suitable for braised pork and eggs.

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When slicing pork belly, carefully cut through the skin, fat, and lean meat by placing the meat skin side down on the cutting board and applying even pressure.

Chicken and Duck:

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For poultry like chicken and duck, use a large cutting board and a specialized poultry cutting knife. Wait until the meat has cooled before slicing. Cut the thighs up to the joints along the back to create a rectangular shape with the chicken. For the wings, cut along the joint, slightly touching the breast. Finally, cut the neck in half and chop it into pieces. For chicken and duck slices, aim for rectangular or parallelogram-shaped pieces, approximately 3x5cm in size.

(Source: Compiled)

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