How to chop parsley and herbs

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Parsley and many other leafy herbs and greens have to be washed thoroughly and chopped carefully. Chef Marc Bauer of the French Culinary Institute in New York shows you how the pros chop parsley and herbs.

How to chop parsley and herbs
  1. Soak parsley in a container deep enough to allow sand to float down to the bottom.
  2. Remove the leaves from the stems.
  3. You can use the end of the stem because it's tender.
  4. Use a chef's knife that is very sharp and slice it thinly.
  5. Then chop it by rolling the knife up and down quickly.
Transcript

 Hi, My name is Marc Bauer. I'm from the French Culinary Institute. I would like to show you how I wash parsley.

Very important, any leafy vegetable, you need to soak them in a container that's big enough so that there's room for the sand to go to the bottom. You can let it soak thirty seconds; you can let it soak five or ten minutes. The dirt will loosen from your product and I'll wash it at least twice. After the first time I'll look at the bottom of the bowl. Is there any sand? No sand - I'm lucky this time. I'll look again. No sand, no problem. I'll wash one more time and I'm ready. I'm not worried. If you see sand you need to probably wash three or four times.

So, once my product is washed and it goes the same with thyme, rosemary, oregano, even lettuce, arugila, basil, or spinach. Now, once I have my leaf washed, I'll remove the green leaves from the stem. Usually the very end of the parsley is tender so it's okay if you have a little piece of stem at the end of the parsley. Notice I have my raw product on the left and my finished in the middle, and my leftovers, trimmings on the very far right. You can remove the leaves one by one but in the industry in order to go a little faster, what we usually do is pull the stem and pull like this and it takes most of the tender parts away from your stem. And I watch to see if I have a little piece of stem.

Once I have enough for my garnish I will finely chop the parsley. For this I will use my chef's knife. First I will slice it, finely slice it. I roll the knife down. I don't want to chop like this as it tends to crush it right now. Later I'll do it. I like to slice through it. You will like to especially do that if you use lettuce leaves or basil. For parsley you can just go up and down, it's not too much of a problem. It's not that sensitive. Arugala will rot right away if you go like this on it to chop it.

By the way, you also need a very sharp knife. If you feel your knife is not sharp you can always use your steel. From one point of the knife go to the end of the steel a few times. Of course, I clean my blade in case there are some metal parts.

Once, I have my parsley thinly sliced I do a similar technique that I use for garlic. Put my hand on one side, hold the knife at the end of the cutting board and go up and down. Once you get used it, it goes pretty quick. I assemble everything. If you have to clean your kitchen just do it slower. Okay, we are almost there. Once it's to the point that the parsley is to the size that you wish. I think this is my last run. That's it, I have chopped parsley.

For thyme, rosemary, and oregano I will do exactly the same process. For parsley I have an extra process, I have to dry it because the way I cut it removes a lot of moisture from it. So, I need to use a paper towel and dry it out. I'll try to see if it removes any moisture. All the moisture goes into the towel. The idea is that the moisture goes into the paper towel and what you can do then is once it's dry you will have it very flaky. That's chopped parsley

meet theexpert
  • Marc Bauer

    Marc Bauer Master Chef, French Culinary Institute Marc Bauer is a Master Chef and Roundsman at the renowned French Culinary Institute and its popular L'Ecole Restaurant in New York City. more about this expert »

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