Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Abolishing the Wedgie


It’s so easy to become used to performing simple tasks a certain way that you rarely question them, even if they are not the best way. And even if you do come across a better way, you are so inured to your habitual procedure that you never make that change.

For example: I always used to serve a roast chicken the way I’d seen it done on TV, and the way my Mum did: cut thin slices from the breast until you’re left with ragged ends you have to gouge out with the knife. These bits invariably end up twisted into dry twigs before the meal is over. The legs get the same treatment, with even less satisfying results and certainly more waste. The slices themselves, cut against the grain, either fall apart or dry out. It’s a terrible way to cut a chicken.

Then one day, I saw it done a different way, on a Gordon Ramsey show, of all things. It was rapid, wasted nothing, and looked great on a plate. First, you cut off the legs. You can divide this from the thigh if you like. Then, you slice down along the breastbone to pull away the entire breast and tenderloin in one go. This you can chop into big fat chunky slices, each with its own bit of crispy skin. Finally, you can turn the now completely bare carcass over to pop out each “oyster” of meat from underneath, in their little pockets. Hey presto: no meat left on the bird, and an appetizing, and moist plate of chicken.

Here is the demonstration. Go to the 1:10 mark.

So I started doing that instead.

I can do it in a minute flat.

The same can be said of cakes. Most everyone I know cuts wedges because it seems like the most obvious way to serve portions of a circular object.

But no. There’s a better way.

Watch this revolutionary example of common sense, and you will never make this mistake again.

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