I Learned How They Chop Onions On The Street…
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I Learned How They Chop Onions On The Street…


Hey guys, what’s up! It’s Alex. So today, we are going to call into question a very basic skill in the kitchen. Something that has been established for years, and yet here we are. Chopping an onion is a task no sane cook would ever question. Oh, what have I done again. Basically, I want to see if I can improve my onion cutting skills. Like, can I chop faster? Can I chop with less cuts? Can I just be more efficient when I chop an onion? I think there is only one way to find out. So, we’ve got loads of things to do. First, we need to review our options. Then, we need to see where I stand. This is a bit frightening, this one. And then, how I can improve myself. And then, just do it! Anyway, let’s just go and get the resources we need. Yeah! Let the crying begin. Right. So we’ve got plenty onions for the training. We can fail miserably quite a few times. And now I suggest that we start from the very, very core. From the very root, if I can say, of the onion chopping technique. Let’s start by the book, and by the book, I mean literally. So it’s called “La Cuisine de Référence”. It’s a French book about all the very, very classic techniques, and even though it’s not my bedside reading, I probably read it like once a year. You can find in there the very essential French technique So let’s look for the onion. So basically, that method is the one most people know. I mean in the western world, at least. First, you want to trim off the root. Not too much, but, you know, just the dirt. Split the onion in half through the root and through the head of the onion. Make a few vertical cuts lengthwise, then a few horizontal cuts lengthwise, and then widthwise, you do vertical cuts. So at the end you get small pieces of onion, usually rectangles or like square shaped. They can be bigger or smaller; it all depends on how many cuts you did vertically and horizontally. And in this case, it will cook much faster, but you won’t have any texture. I always do medium because… I’m hopeless. I’m going to perform a speed test. And that’s basically how you’re supposed to chop an onion in restaurants or at home, and now let’s turn ourselves to the future a.k.a. YouTube. My idea is to check if I can find any other option out there. So, I’m a simple guy. Let’s take the first one. Whaaaa? I want to learn this technique. Let’s do it street style. So I’m not saying I’m gonna be anything close to the speed of that guy, but at least I can try to improve my technique. The first thing I noticed in the video is that that guy is not using a fancy knife. He’s just using a long knife. Let me show you why. He uses the tip to prevent the onion from being cut all the way through, and that’s… genius. Right. So apparently, it’s not that easy to master, but let’s not give up. One, two, three, four, five. Ninety degree turn. One, two, three, four, five. Then sideways. One, two, three, four, five. And then the rest. Flat, ninety degree turn, flat. This is exciting. Learning a new thing is always exciting. Two, three, four, five. And that, my friend, is my best first stage so far. The onion is still holding up, yet I’ve been doing a crisscross motion Hang in there, Alex. Hang in there, Alex! I kinda get the technique now, but the speed is a bit more complicated. This is my last onion. I’m gonna perform a speed test, like the first one. I just want to keep all my knuckles and my fingers, but still I’m gonna try to be as fast as I can. And surprisingly this technique, although it seems quite slow, just went 14 seconds faster. That’s huge on 30 seconds. That’s like an improvement of uh… Uh…. I suck at this… Advantages and drawbacks. Street style feels a bit more dangerous than the first one. More rough, bits are a bit bigger. But if you’re doing a sauce or if you’re doing a stew, it doesn’t matter. So guys, if you want to learn that street food technique, I would suggest you first perfect the French classic technique. Learn how to control the knife, how to get your full speed, control how big you want the pieces to be. I think it’s a nice start. Then, move on to the street food style. If you have any ideas of things I could cook with, like, five to ten kilos of chopped onions, please let me know in the comments, that would be super precious. And last, people, click subscribe because I make new videos every week, and it’s always about food; It can be a vlog, like the one I did about a French market a week ago, or it can be, you know, an experiment like this one, learning new skills, also, series like the winemaking series or the bread series. Stay curious, stay hungry. Bye bye. Salut.

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100 thoughts on “I Learned How They Chop Onions On The Street…

  1. Next time you chop up 10 kg of onions and don't know what to do with it: gulasch (just need 10 kg of beef). If you need some tips for the knödel that go with it, give me a call.

  2. I have a question here, why are the titles and the description text in german for me all over suddenly? I´m in Germany, so it makes sense, but is this an auto translation I didn´t shut down or what?

  3. Art is if all pieces are same.. First think is that you need good knife which is suite for your style of cutting.. Cuteee

  4. French people smell of onions and garbage. How do you know a French man has been over to your house? Your trash cans are empty and your dog is pregnant.

  5. nice!
    i will start doing this immedialty, when i want those chunky sized dice!
    you probably need a proper sharpening of that knife, especially when dicing onions lmao

  6. I have watched 5 of this mans videos.. is he autistic? There's no way a man his age can have such little knowledge of essential life skills.

  7. That's a nice knife,I'll give you that.

    But the engravings give you no tactical advantage whatsoever.

    ….Unless you're planning to auction it as a collector's item.

  8. Leave the root on..peel the skin back..and hold the onion in place by the skin..chop until you get to the root..then discard root and skin. The skin serves and your very own onion handle..and it keeps the onion from slipping

  9. I guess your just to good for me to answer because you over a million I have a new rule I will no longer watch anyone over a million because they are above me and I just deserve nothing.

  10. Hi Alex, please stop translating your titles into different languages. The original title is more authentic. (And the translation quality is not the best 😀 )

  11. I realize I’m late to the video, but why do you not want to cut all the way through the onion on the first cuts?

  12. that man on the street, cutting with a sharpened hack saw blade because it's a good source of carbon steel. its very common in India 😁👍

  13. Potato soup or simply sauté them, freeze them in portion sizes for your breakfast potatoes. The crispier the better.

  14. this commen is so late that you would have molded onions by now. but there is only one thing you can use that maney onions for.
    VAMPIRE WAR. ooh wait that would be garlic…
    okay then onion soup. 😉

  15. I do it the scuffed style where I quarter the onion and then just make slices and then randomly chop those up cuz I suck at cubes.

  16. what restaurant allows you as a cook to chop onion bricks like that. I know I would get smacked by my Chef if he catches me doing that

    ???

  17. Hey just wanted to drop a comment, I really enjoy watching your videos and as a prep cook I really enjoyed this video. I love learning new improvements I can add to my personal technique, so please make some more "experimental" videos! Either way I'm watching 🙂

  18. Thank you for wiping your knife blade after you sharpened it, Alex!! You would not believe how many FAMOUS CHEFS I've seen sharpen their knife and then start cutting away… By the way, the guy from India had a pretty skinny blade, which could make a difference… I dunno… he probably had the blindfold on cause he can't see anyways due to his eyes tearing up non-stop!!! lol

  19. Make as much onion soup as you can and give it to the homeless or a soup kitchen near you 😁👍 that's what I'd do if I could.

  20. Deep fry those onions in oil till dark brown. drain store in fridge. you can have stock for month long curry .Make Indian curry by adding 1/4 cup of those fried onions with 200 gm tomato inch garlic and ginger , with green chillis . saute this mixture till tomatoes are done and add chicken or any vegetable and cook after adding water salt to taste and add turmeric powder for traditional Indian taste. voila you can eat Indian curry month long. you can even package these fried onions and sell to an Indian store , North indians dont cook without this deep fried brown onions.

  21. When your eyes water while you're chopping an onion, if you peel the top layer off… I think it's called the cornea, takes your mind right off the onion.

  22. Make Pörkölt – amount of onions has always been a limitation for me. You'll do you research anyway, but you need beef/cow shins (best with bone).

  23. Honestly I don't see why Alex's videos have so many downvotes. He takes a great scientific approach to seemingly simple processes that have many integral components to perfection of the art of said processes. The insights given may not be your "wham, bam, done" simple step by step, but he provides insights that most writings and recordings I've seen, overlook. BUT, he gives you the right amount of room to keep asking questions, do your own research, and superior a better chef.

    A+ Alex, merci beaucoup, and I look forward to more of your videos!

    P.S. the knife sharpening video was great, after lots of reading and watching videos, it's a clear and beautiful shortcut on the internet to the ins and outs of perfectly sharpening any knife.

  24. I’ve seen people use the back of their knife to push chopped ingredients around as to not dull their blades so quickly.

  25. Omg the way you’re not curling your fingers back on the non chopping hand is freaking me out. Watch the angle of fingers on the speed chopper!

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