Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Tuesday Tip: Mise en Place

If I took away ANYTHING from culinary school, it was this technique.  "Mise en Place" in French means "everything in place".  When you are working in a kitchen, especially an industrial kitchen with 20+ others using the same resources, having everything in your work station BEFORE you start is key.

Although now I have my own little kitchen and space, I still practice this technique because it makes sense.  Basically, you make sure you have EVERYTHING (spoons, spices, pans, cooking utensils--EVERYTHING) you need to make a recipe in one place.  That way, you don't have to go searching for something mid-recipe and ruin it because you stepped away for too long.

{Black Bean Ragout original recipe}

{Black Bean Ragout Mise en Place}

This also helps to make sure you have all the ingredients you need.  Can you tell me what I am missing in my Mise en Place? 

Lime juice!  (Measuring spoons, knife and cutting board are on the other side of the stove because of space constraint)  I didn't have any so I texted the hubby to pick some up on his way home.  If I hadn't gotten everything together beforehand, I would have been scrambling (stressing) at the last minute because I didn't have EVERYTHING to finish the recipe!  I would have done without in this particular instance, but I can't luck out like that all the time.

Have you ever realized mid-recipe you didn't have everything you needed?  Wasn't it stressful?  Did it turn out?  This is a great habit to get into!

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