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From Cutting Board to Stove


weinoo
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There are probably only a limited number of ways to get stuff from one's cutting board to the saute pan or frying pan or whatever else might waiting on top of the range.

Every once in a while, I use this...

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Then, I bought one of these...

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A tool which basically never comes out of its drawer.

Mostly, my chopped up stuff gets picked up with the knife I'm using at the time...

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Which means multiple trips and a bigger mess than necessary. Why I do this, I don't know, but it's a really old habit.

How the heck do you make the transfer? And should I be retraining myself into using one of those other methods?

Mitch Weinstein aka "weinoo"

Tasty Travails - My Blog

My eGullet FoodBog - A Tale of Two Boroughs

Was it you baby...or just a Brilliant Disguise?

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I have a 18x24 cutting board, but I still like a lot of room for my knife, even though I only have an 8" chef's knife. If I have a lot of veggies I put them on a plate and then push them into the pan from there.

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I use my hands or the same type of scraper in the first photo in the original post.

I'm no good at using a knife to carry prepped food around. I will have to train myself to use the knife in my hand better.

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I have both of the scrapers you pictured. My cutting board is butcher block part of a permanent island so no picking it up. Hate the flexible boards. So I use the scrapers or my knife depending on quantity of food. The flat blade scraper is magnetic so I embedded a rare earth magnet in the side of my island so it is always at hand. The other one, with sides isn't magnetic so I finally attached a steel washer to the handle and now it sticks to another embedded magnet. I wouldn't use them if they were tucked in a drawer but they work fine when they are handy.

Sometimes it is easier to carry the pan to the island and just scrape the food directly into the pan with my knife or the scraper. Works fine except if the pot it too heavy!

Llyn Strelau

Calgary, Alberta

Canada

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I'm with BadRabbit - carry board, push off with knife or hand. Now & again when I've worked myself into a corner (chopped item stacked on left, chopped item stacked on right, just-chopped item in the middle and needed now), or for some other reason I'll pick up in handfuls and transfer that way. Sometimes for complex preparations I'll be chopping and transferring to bowls of various sizes.

QUIET!  People are trying to pontificate.

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I have an 18x24 boos block, I usually tend to just pick the items up (such as mushrooms) and place them in the pan. Other things that go in further in the cooking process (like minced garlic/shallot/leek/other very small items) I have a tendency to hold the hot pan below the board and swipe it in with my hand.

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For normal, low test cooking....I use the back/flat of my chef's knife (10-inch), and scoop with that. I have a bench scraper I use religiously when I make bread, but never think about it for the scoop & drop action when I'm chopping. And it's out, on the counter, tucked in back of the sugar bowl & shallot basket, all the time. Just don't think of it.

If it's a meal with a LOT of mise....Cajun/Creole with the trinity, and tomatoes, and garlic, and herbs all going in at different times, or a stir-fry with similar, differently timed additions to the pot...I do have 2 cutting boards, and will group by when the ingredients get added. So the aromatics, let's say in the stir-fry, garlic, ginger and onion, get chopped on one board and set aside, then the actual veg gets chopped on a second board and set aside. When it's time to add, then I do the lift-the-board-to-the-pan-and-swipe action.

If it's REALLY intense, I'll use prep bowls/plates. But that's rare, because that usually means it's a real production.

The knife-scoop action just seems most natural to me, and doesn't break the flow of what I'm doing.

--Roberta--

"Let's slip out of these wet clothes, and into a dry Martini" - Robert Benchley

Pierogi's eG Foodblog

My *outside* blog, "A Pound Of Yeast"

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flexible cutting mats. chop, carry and funnel into the pan. lather, rinse, repeat.

Unfortunately (or not, depending on point of view), I don't have these in my kitchen. I can't stand the sound of cutting on most anything but wood, and I think it's easier on knives.

That's why once you have used a Chinese cleaver, you will never use any other knife again.

dcarch

When I first started cooking, it was Chinese food that I taught myself how to make. And of course, I had a beautiful wok and 2 Chinese cleavers. That was a while ago. The cleaver is a brilliant instrument for many tasks...I just don't use it any more, except the heavy one for hacking. I have too many knife choices now, I guess.

Mitch Weinstein aka "weinoo"

Tasty Travails - My Blog

My eGullet FoodBog - A Tale of Two Boroughs

Was it you baby...or just a Brilliant Disguise?

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If it's going directly into a pan, I'll generally use my small, handled wooden cutting board and swipe it in with the back of my knife. Meats are rarely added straight from the block - they go into bowls of quick marinade, and into the pan from those. I have 10 cutting boards, so I never run into the "chop yourself into a corner" thing....

Elizabeth Campbell, baking 10,000 feet up at 1° South latitude.

My eG Food Blog (2011)My eG Foodblog (2012)

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.. I have 10 cutting boards, so I never run into the "chop yourself into a corner" thing....

I have three, but I'll still do it, absent-mindedly. Probably once again very soon, too. There's planning and there's doing, and there's "how hard can it be ?"

QUIET!  People are trying to pontificate.

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The board I usually use is too big to lift easily, so if it's a small amount of stuff and it's not too complicated, then I'll prep as I go and transfer things on the flat of the knife blade. If it's something more complicated, I'll prep everything in advance and transfer using the knife, or if I've run out of board space, I'll use small bowls. If I have a lot of stuff to transfer, and it's awkward to pick up with a knife or my hands, then I'll prop the pan or pot on a partially open drawer under the counter where the board is, and sweep it all into the pot from the board with a knife.

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If i'm just making some snack-sized thing, then I'll be amateurish and take it to the stove on a bench scraper.

Anything bigger, then prep bowls. I use takeout containers or 1 and 2 quart square sided containers. I can wash them in seconds so who cares. If you have good board management habits, it's faster to prep on a big board than on a small portable one, even even if you take into account the time it takes to wash a prep container. A lot faster.

Notes from the underbelly

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My cutting board is cantilevered so that it sticks a little higher and over the edge of the sink where the disposer is located so that I can sweep the garbage off the board and into the disposer ( I know I should save it for compost or stock but I don't).

My stove is directly behind me so when I have too much stuff on the cutting board to transfer with my hands, i turn around, pick up the skilled and hold it under the overhand of the cutting board and scoop the contents off into the pan.

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My range is directly behind my prep area so it's easy to...

1. Move pan to board, hold below table height, scrape food in.

2. Move board to pan and scrape food in.

3. Scrape food into sizzling platter, take to pan and dump in.

The Big Cheese

BlackMesaRanch.com

My Blog: "The Kitchen Chronicles"

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Sorting things into bowls, ramekins, plates and other vessels of appropriate size before moving them to the saucepan appeals to my autism and is a nice way of handling my shitty hand-eye co-ordination--multiple trips from here to there, ferrying onions on the side of a knife blade, is just asking for woe.

Chris Taylor

Host, eG Forums - ctaylor@egstaff.org

 

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