CTE Task: Practicing Basic Knife Cuts

Click here to download the teacher resource for this task.

COURSE:

Culinary Arts I and Culinary Arts II

TASK LENGTH:

50 minutes

 

Practicing Basic Knife Cuts

Task Description

Standards

In this activity, students will

  1. watch “How to Master Basic Knife Skills – Knife Cuts 101” by Chef Billy Parisi and complete accompanying worksheet; 
  2. complete the knife cuts activity by replicating four out of nine basic knife cuts and documenting their mastery with a picture and 2-3-sentence self-evaluation for each cut.

Culinary Arts I, Standard 20: Categorize the different types of cuts by justifying how they should be used for a given recipe or presentation. Prepare a workstation for knife work. Practice and execute the three basic knife cuts (slice, stick, and dice) using the correct safety methods. Upload either a picture or video into the student portfolio documenting correct use.

Culinary Arts II, Standard 12: Compare and contrast the size and shape of different cuts used in commercial kitchens. Practice performing different cuts using the correct steps corresponding to each. Cuts include but are not limited to: brunosie, chiffonade, dice, julienne, mince, and rondelle. Either record a video or take a picture to demonstrate mastery of techniques to place in the student portfolio. Execute proper safety and cutting techniques when using knives in the lab.

 Content Understandings

Extending Understandings

Upon successful completion of these tasks, students will demonstrate the ability to:

  • demonstrate the best form when holding and using a chef’s knife;
  • identify basic knife cuts, including small dice, medium dice, large dice, fine mince, brunoise, julienne , chiffonade, batonette, and rough chop;
  • replicate at least four of the nine basic knife cuts (small dice, medium dice, large dice, fine mince, brunoise, julienne, chiffonade, batonette, and chop).

 

To move students towards deeper understanding, they should be given opportunities to:

  • replicate all nine of the basic knife cuts (small dice, medium dice, large dice, fine mince, brunoise, julienne, chiffonade, batonette, and rough chop);
  • identify when each cut should be used, based on the dish being prepared.

Support Strategies

If students are struggling to access this task, additional supports and strategies could be employed as students are engaging with the task.

Key Terms

Sentence Frames

Scaffolded Questions

Brunoise

 

 

Julienne

 

 

 

Chiffonade

 

 

Mince

 

 

Batonette

 

 

 

Dice

 

 

 

Rough chop

To __________ means to cut it up into 1/8 inch cubes.

 

If you’re asked to ___________ a carrot, you need to cut up the carrot into 1/8” X 1/8” X 2” cuts.

 

You’ll most often use a ___________ on leafy vegetables.  

 

Often when chopping garlic or parsley, you’ll use a _____________.

 

If you want to use a knife cut to create a fancy garnish, try a ____________, which are cuts that measure ¼” X ¼” X 2”.

 

There are three difference sizes of a _______ cut, ranging from small (1/4”X1/4”X1/4”) to large (3/4”X3/4”X3/4”).

 

If you’re cutting up vegetables for a rustic vegetable soup, you’ll likely use a ______________ to give your cuts variation in shape and size.

What knife cuts do you think will be hardest to master? Why?

 

Why is important to master as many different knife cuts and skills as possible to succeed as a chef?

 

Teacher Instructional Materials (See Appendix):

“How to Master Basic Knife Skills – Knife Cuts 101” Video Guide

Practicing Knife Cuts Activity Instructions

“How to Master Basic Knife Skills – Knife Cuts 101” Video Stills

 

Teacher/Student Instructional Videos:

“How to Master Basic Knife Skills – Knife Cuts 101” by Chef Billy Parisi (running time: 11:03) (Chef Billy Parisi. (2019, July 26). How to Master Basic Knife Skills – Knife Cuts 101 [Video]. YouTube. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VJNA4vrdWec)

 

Teacher/Student Instructional Materials:

Basic Knife Skills by Bruno Albouze (Bruno Albouze. (2017, Jan 26). Basic Knife Skills – Bruno Albouze [Video]. YouTube. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8VBnaFhOEn8)

 

What’s a Good Kitchen Knife? (ChefToddMohr. (2016 Apt 11). What’s a Good Kitchen Knife? [Video]. YouTube. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TiS3CJW6R8I)

 

Kitchen Safety: Preventing Cuts from Knives (WorkSafeBC. (2018, Apr 10). Kitchen Safety: Preventing Cuts from Knives [Video]. YouTube. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3kmDuLVwM48)

 

 

Practicing Basic Knife Cuts

Context:

This activity should be one of the first of several lessons and activities that focus on proper knife handling and techniques. It’ll focus on the basic knife cuts that students need to master.

 

Activity Steps:

  1. Students will first watch “How to Master Basic Knife Skills – Knife Cuts 101” by Chef Billy Parisi and complete the accompanying worksheet as they watch.
  2. Students will then select four of the nine knife cuts taught in the video and replicate these cuts. Once they’ve successfully completed the cuts, they will take pictures of each one and upload the pictures into PowerPoint or Google Slides. Underneath each picture, students need to label the cut and provide a 2-3-sentence evaluation of each cut. They should use the stills from the “How to Master Basic Knife Skills – Knife Cuts 101” video to help them assess their knife cuts.
  3. Once they’ve completed all activity steps, students will submit their video worksheet and complete PowerPoint/Google Slides to the instructor for evaluation and feedback.

 

Practicing Basic Knife Cuts Teacher Rubric

 

Cut       

Criteria

Size

Uniformity

Self-evaluation  

Brunoise

1/8”X1/8”X1/8”

Fine, tiny squares

____ Beginner: Cuts are much smaller or larger than indicated size

____ Intermediate: Cuts are relatively close to indicated size, may be slightly smaller or larger

____ Advanced:  Cuts are approximately the correct indicated size

____ Beginner: Rough, cuts are not uniform in shape or size, and appropriate cut is vaguely apparent

____ Intermediate: Majority of the cuts are the correct shape and size with some varied pieces mixed in, appropriate cut is easily apparent

____ Advanced:  All cuts are identical in shape and size, appropriate cut is immediately apparent

 

____ Beginner: Not yet able to clearly and proficiently articulate proper technique and identify strengths and weaknesses with technique

____ Intermediate: Can clearly and proficiently articulate proper technique, but still finds it difficult to identify strengths and weaknesses with technique

____ Advanced:  Can clearly and proficiently articulate proper technique and easily identifies strengths and weaknesses with technique

Small Dice

1/4”X1/4”X1/4”

Cube cut with six even sides

____ Beginner: Cuts are much smaller or larger than indicated size

____ Intermediate: Cuts are relatively close to indicated size, may be slightly smaller or larger

____ Advanced:  Cuts are approximately the correct indicated size

____ Beginner: Rough, cuts are not uniform in shape or size, and appropriate cut is vaguely apparent

____ Intermediate: Majority of the cuts are the correct shape and size with some varied pieces mixed in, appropriate cut is easily apparent

____ Advanced:  All cuts are identical in shape and size, appropriate cut is immediately apparent

 

____ Beginner: Not yet able to clearly and proficiently articulate proper technique and identify strengths and weaknesses with technique

____ Intermediate: Can clearly and proficiently articulate proper technique, but still finds it difficult to identify strengths and weaknesses with technique

____ Advanced:  Can clearly and proficiently articulate proper technique and easily identifies strengths and weaknesses with technique

Medium Dice

1/2”X1/2”X1/2”

Cube cut with six even sides

____ Beginner: Cuts are much smaller or larger than indicated size

____ Intermediate: Cuts are relatively close to indicated size, may be slightly smaller or larger

____ Advanced:  Cuts are approximately the correct indicated size

____ Beginner: Rough, cuts are not uniform in shape or size, and appropriate cut is vaguely apparent

____ Intermediate: Majority of the cuts are the correct shape and size with some varied pieces mixed in, appropriate cut is easily apparent

____ Advanced:  All cuts are identical in shape and size, appropriate cut is immediately apparent

 

____ Beginner: Not yet able to clearly and proficiently articulate proper technique and identify strengths and weaknesses with technique

____ Intermediate: Can clearly and proficiently articulate proper technique, but still finds it difficult to identify strengths and weaknesses with technique

____ Advanced:  Can clearly and proficiently articulate proper technique and easily identifies strengths and weaknesses with technique

Large Dice

3/4”X3/4”X3/4”

Cube cut with six even sides

____ Beginner: Cuts are much smaller or larger than indicated size

____ Intermediate: Cuts are relatively close to indicated size, may be slightly smaller or larger

____ Advanced:  Cuts are approximately the correct indicated size

____ Beginner: Rough, cuts are not uniform in shape or size, and appropriate cut is vaguely apparent

____ Intermediate: Majority of the cuts are the correct shape and size with some varied pieces mixed in, appropriate cut is easily apparent

____ Advanced:  All cuts are identical in shape and size, appropriate cut is immediately apparent

____ Beginner: Not yet able to clearly and proficiently articulate proper technique and identify strengths and weaknesses with technique

____ Intermediate: Can clearly and proficiently articulate proper technique, but still finds it difficult to identify strengths and weaknesses with technique

____ Advanced:  Can clearly and proficiently articulate proper technique and easily identifies strengths and weaknesses with technique

Batonette

1/4”X1/4”X2”

A strip cut

____ Beginner: Cuts are much smaller or larger than indicated size

____ Intermediate: Cuts are relatively close to indicated size, may be slightly smaller or larger

____ Advanced:  Cuts are approximately the correct indicated size

____ Beginner: Rough, cuts are not uniform in shape or size, and appropriate cut is vaguely apparent

____ Intermediate: Majority of the cuts are the correct shape and size with some varied pieces mixed in, appropriate cut is easily apparent

____ Advanced:  All cuts are identical in shape and size, appropriate cut is immediately apparent

 

____ Beginner: Not yet able to clearly and proficiently articulate proper technique and identify strengths and weaknesses with technique

____ Intermediate: Can clearly and proficiently articulate proper technique, but still finds it difficult to identify strengths and weaknesses with technique

____ Advanced:  Can clearly and proficiently articulate proper technique and easily identifies strengths and weaknesses with technique

Julienne

1/8”X1/8”X2”

A fine strip cut

 

____ Beginner: Cuts are much smaller or larger than indicated size

____ Intermediate: Cuts are relatively close to indicated size, may be slightly smaller or larger

____ Advanced:  Cuts are approximately the correct indicated size

____ Beginner: Rough, cuts are not uniform in shape or size, and appropriate cut is vaguely apparent

____ Intermediate: Majority of the cuts are the correct shape and size with some varied pieces mixed in, appropriate cut is easily apparent

____ Advanced:  All cuts are identical in shape and size, appropriate cut is immediately apparent

 

____ Beginner: Not yet able to clearly and proficiently articulate proper technique and identify strengths and weaknesses with technique

____ Intermediate: Can clearly and proficiently articulate proper technique, but still finds it difficult to identify strengths and weaknesses with technique

____ Advanced:  Can clearly and proficiently articulate proper technique and easily identifies strengths and weaknesses with technique

Rough Chop

Random chop with pieces of various shapes and sizes

____ Beginner: Cuts are much smaller or larger than indicated size

____ Intermediate: Cuts are relatively close to indicated size, may be slightly smaller or larger

____ Advanced:  Cuts are approximately the correct indicated size

____ Beginner: Rough, cuts are not uniform in shape or size, and appropriate cut is vaguely apparent

____ Intermediate: Majority of the cuts are the correct shape and size with some varied pieces mixed in, appropriate cut is easily apparent

____ Advanced:  All cuts are identical in shape and size, appropriate cut is immediately apparent

 

____ Beginner: Not yet able to clearly and proficiently articulate proper technique and identify strengths and weaknesses with technique

____ Intermediate: Can clearly and proficiently articulate proper technique, but still finds it difficult to identify strengths and weaknesses with technique

____ Advanced:  Can clearly and proficiently articulate proper technique and easily identifies strengths and weaknesses with technique

Fine Mince

A very fine dice

____ Beginner: Cuts are much smaller or larger than indicated size

____ Intermediate: Cuts are relatively close to indicated size, may be slightly smaller or larger

____ Advanced:  Cuts are approximately the correct indicated size

____ Beginner: Rough, cuts are not uniform in shape or size, and appropriate cut is vaguely apparent

____ Intermediate: Majority of the cuts are the correct shape and size with some varied pieces mixed in, appropriate cut is easily apparent

____ Advanced:  All cuts are identical in shape and size, appropriate cut is immediately apparent

 

____ Beginner: Not yet able to clearly and proficiently articulate proper technique and identify strengths and weaknesses with technique

____ Intermediate: Can clearly and proficiently articulate proper technique, but still finds it difficult to identify strengths and weaknesses with technique

____ Advanced:  Can clearly and proficiently articulate proper technique and easily identifies strengths and weaknesses with technique

Chiffonade

Finely cut, long, thin strips of a leafy green vegetable

____ Beginner: Cuts are much smaller or larger than indicated size

____ Intermediate: Cuts are relatively close to indicated size, may be slightly smaller or larger

____ Advanced:  Cuts are approximately the correct indicated size

____ Beginner: Rough, cuts are not uniform in shape or size, and appropriate cut is vaguely apparent

____ Intermediate: Majority of the cuts are the correct shape and size with some varied pieces mixed in, appropriate cut is easily apparent

____ Advanced:  All cuts are identical in shape and size, appropriate cut is immediately apparent

 

____ Beginner: Not yet able to clearly and proficiently articulate proper technique and identify strengths and weaknesses with technique

____ Intermediate: Can clearly and proficiently articulate proper technique, but still finds it difficult to identify strengths and weaknesses with technique

____ Advanced:  Can clearly and proficiently articulate proper technique and easily identifies strengths and weaknesses with technique

Overall assessment: ______ Beginner          ______ Intermediate          ______ Advanced

 

 

Additional Comments/Notes:

 

 

 

  

Student Resources

Click here to download the student resource for this task.

 

“How to Master Basic Knife Skills – Knife Cuts 101” Video Guide

Instructions: Complete the following video guide as you watch “How to Master Basic Knife Cuts – Knife Skills 101”

                                  

  1. The __________ knife is about 8-12 inches long and is the go-to knife for all chefs.

 

  1. To properly hold a knife, you want to grab it and pinch it by the blade using your _____________ and ____________ finger.

 

  1. Important! When holding the food with your non-knife hand, you always want to ___________ your ___________ on this hand.

 

  1. A _____________ is an 1/8 inch cube. 

 

  1. A ________ dice, which produces ¼ inch cubes, and a __________ dice, which produces ½ inch cubes, are two knife cuts you’ll use quite often in the kitchen.

 

  1. A __________ dice, which produces ¾ inch cubes, is often used for soups and other hearty meals. 

 

  1. _______________ are knife cuts that make great little garnishes.

 

  1. To ___________, you need to make 1/8” X 1/8” X 2” cuts.

 

  1. A __________ chop is whatever you need it to be.

 

  1. A _____________ can be used for garlic, garnish, and especially parsley.

 

  1. Basil is the only herb you’ll ever use a ______________ on.

 

Practicing Knife Cuts

Instructions: Select four of the nine knife cuts and replicate each. After you’ve completed each cut, take a picture. Once you’ve completed and documented your cuts, share your pictures with your teacher. In your final picture, make sure to include a quarter to indicate proper size of your cuts. Under each picture, make sure you label the cut and provide a 2-3 sentence evaluation on your cut—what you did well, what still needs work, and how many attempts you made before you got the right cut. Use the stills from the “How to Master Basic Knife Cuts – Knife Cuts 101” video to guide you. Note: You can only choose one of the dices—small, medium, or large.

Brunoise cutting
Small dice
medium dice
large dice, batonette, julienne
Rough chop, fine mince, chiffonade

 

How to Master Basic Knife Cuts – Knife Skills 101” Video Stills

Instructions: Use the stills from the Chef Billy Parisi’s instructional video to help guide you with your own knife cuts.