When considering taking up cooking, all aspiring chefs must learn basic knife skills. A knife is one of the most versatile tools a chef has at their disposal. Although its main purpose is to chop and cut, a knife is a chefs best friend in the kitchen and every chef has their out kits with knives they trust and feel good in their hand. And yet knives are considered one of the most dangerous tools in the kitchen and every aspiring chef or home cook must learn the proper techniques involved in cutting and chopping with a knife.
It is now no secret that I could be considered a fan boy of Gordon Ramsay. But in fairness his skills in the kitchen are supreme. In comparison to other famous chefs around the world he is most certainly one of the top 5 most influential and skilled chefs in the world. And his knife skills follow suit in this regard. Through watching his youtube videos and recipes he implores the same basic skill of a technique colorfully named “the claw.” Which hysterically and immediately reminds me of “the claw” from toy story.
The Claw Technique:
This technique is the base skill used in all cutting and is the safest technique in using a knife. As you can tell by the image above this technique was named the claw due to the forming of the chefs hand over the produce. The logistics of this technique is to keep the front knuckle of your index and middle finger against the flat side of the knife and to glide the knife against it to keep the blade straight and in place. Also you can see from the photo that the finger nails and tips are bent behind the knuckle. This is so that when you bring the blade down to cut you do not slice open the tip of your finger or nail. And as your index finger and middle finger are gliding against the side of the knife, your other fingers are pressed against the produce in order to keep it stable. This is the basics of cutting and chopping. This is the first technique all new chefs learn in order to properly handle a knife safely and effectively in professional kitchens. And not only do professionals in the kitchen employ this technique but every new cook should practice this and try to perfect this.