There are plenty of vegetables knife cuts that exist in French cuisine but even as an enthusiast everyday cook you do not need to remember all of them. That said there are 3 to 4 cuts that you should be aware of. Mainly:
- The Brunoise cut – cubes of 2 millimeter (C)
- The Macedoine cut – cubes of 4 millimeter (D)
- The Mirepoix cut – cube like cuts of 1 to 1.5 Cm (A)
- The Julienne cut (fine strips)
An easy way to remember the vegetables cuts above is that they are all cubes like in shape and they only differ in size except for the julienne which is a very fine strip cut of vegetable.
Regarding the way they are used, it is also not very complicated, the Brunoise and the Julienne cuts are used mostly use as garnish only, usually when serving soup or food on plates for guest or in a fine dining restaurant setting.
The Macedoine can be consumed as is in a dish while the mirepoix is only used to cut vegetables that are part of an aromatic based for a dish ( so it means that a mirepoix of vegetables is always discarded at the end )
There is actually a classic French dish called: “Macedoine de legume”
which could be translated as “vegetable Macedoine salad” which is not named after the country (Macedonia) but after the actual knife cut that you need to apply to the vegetables in the salad.
If you wonder how to make this delicious fresh vegetable salad see the recipe below:
Cut all the vegetables with a uniform Macedoine Cut (except the garden peas)then boil them until tender. when done plunge them in icy water to make sure they are nice and cold then, reserve them in the fridge for about an hour. just before serving, mix all the vegetables and the mayonnaise together, place in a dish then serve either in individual portion or let your guest help themselves from a larger salad bowl. Ingredients:
- 250 g carrots
- 125 g potatoes
- 125 g green beans
- 125 g garden peas
- 125 g of turnips
Make a homemade French Mayonnaise