Thursday, January 30, 2014

Craftsy's "Complete Knife Skills" Free Class Review

You guys already know I love Craftsy, right?  Well a few days ago, I got an email from Craftsy telling me about their new class, Complete Knife Skills with Brendan McDermott.  I love to cook and I would consider myself a better than average cook, but prepping my veggies is something that I always feel like I'm not doing right.  Onions make my eyes burn and I never get even sized pieces.  I beat my poor parsley to death.  And don't even get me started on how I peel garlic.

This class consists of four lessons and starts right out with what kind of knives you need.  I expected to be told that I need a dozen different knives and that I had to invest in top of the line cutlery.  Not so, Brendan recommends four different types of knives, and if you don't cook a lot of meat, you can get away with three- the chef knife, the paring knife, and a serrated utility knife.  The rest of the class is spent perfecting how to use these three knives.  He recommends buying investing in good quality knives, but doesn't come off as snobby or make you feel that it would be impossible to do what he does.

The second lesson is about four main cuts, the low cut, high cut, horizontal cut, and pull cut.  He goes into how to cut plateaus, juliennes, and dice your produce.  He goes in how to cut onions, garlic, shallots, carrots, and celery.  The third lesson takes what he's shown so far and works it into peppers, pineapples, herbs, butternut squash, and other odd sized veggies.  The fourth lesson is all about caring for your blades by honing or sharpening them.  He teaches the difference and when to use each one.

The class is great because Brendan never talks down to the class, he shows the wrong way and explains why it's wrong, then shows the correct method, and explains why it's better to how you've probably been doing it.  I picked up a ton of tips and am anxious to try them out next time I make soup or stir fry.

Best of all, this class is FREE!  I'll admit, when I saw it was a free class, I wasn't expecting a whole lot.  But Craftsy and the instructor puts just as much time and effort into it as the paid classes.  The camera work is good, you can really see what he's doing and Brendan is insightful and funny.  You'd think a class about knives would be pretty dull (no pun intended), but it really is interesting and broken down into doable pieces.

So, if you're interested in learning how to improve your knife work, click the link and check it out.  As with all Craftsy classes, you can watch at your own pace and rewatch as much as you want. 

Note, all links are affiliate links, but the review is 100% my own opinion.

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