How to cut basil into strips

It’s Tuesday Tip Day!! We decided that it’s important to bring back on a weekly basis some of the most important tips that we have given you over the past year…just to make sure you don’t forget them!! 

This week’s tip is about how to cut basil into strips. There is nothing like fresh basil, and this is the perfect time of year for it! Well…once the cold weather stops, it will be the perfect time of year!!!

This technique applies for basil, mint and other leafy herbs. It can also be used to ‘shred’ leafy green vegetables such as lettuce, spinach, swiss chard. The technique to a classically trained chef is a Chiffonade. But, unless you like crossword puzzles, who cares.

How to cut basil into strips:

1. Wash the basil and pat dry

2. Take the basil by the stems and stack each leaf neatly on top of each other from largest leaf on the bottom to smallest on top.
Chopping Basil
2. Roll the stack. For basil and other soft stemmed greens, roll in either direction you prefer. For greens with a tougher stem you want to remove, roll from tip to stem and just cut the stem out.

3. Slice the basil into thin strips otherwise known as a chiffonade.

Chiffonade of Basil
How to Chop Basil

4. If needed for your recipe, you can turn the chiffonade side ways and cut a few more times to be more of a dice, but generally a chiffonade will do.

Important Tips:

Basil will bruise easily upon cutting so don’t cut too far in advance of use or it will look almost black. Drizzling the leaves with a little olive oil before cutting will help but the biggest help is using this technique and a very sharp knife.

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