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View Full Version : Efficiency and Boring Tasks



Seth
06-09-2012, 04:51 PM
I once watched Rachael Ray - fast meals. I'm not convinced that she is a great cook but I liked the idea. Much of prep can be boring so the challenge is how efficient you can be. I watched Theory slice 500 grape tomatoes horizontally - never thought of that. I was just shredding chicken for chicken salad; its slow. I've tried one fork, two forks, fingers, fish tweezers.

Can you guys who do large quantity everyday share some secrets for the rest of us? Is there a fast way to shred chicken? and other tasks that seem to be labor intensive?
s.

PS: Chicken salad is for tonight's Bryn Mawr concert, Dar Williams. I love this; $10 gets you to a twilight concert with dogs (of course), picnics, wine, good music, and great weather. These community concerts are drawing some great talent: Chris Smithers, Tom Chapin, Richie Havens (remember him?), Jim Boggia....okay not super duper names but a great time.

Eamon Burke
06-09-2012, 05:02 PM
The key to shredding chicken quickly is to know where the grain of the meat is and where it changes. After a while it's not so tedious.

Also, if you let the chicken fill up the tines of the fork and don't clean it out, it works better.

stopbarking
06-09-2012, 06:22 PM
Hobart for pulled chicken. Does not work so well for pulled pork.

Chifunda
06-09-2012, 06:38 PM
Richie Havens (remember him?)

Sure do...although I wish I could say, "No, man. He was WAY before my time!" :razz:

Sounds like a party to me!

SameGuy
06-09-2012, 06:44 PM
I shred chicken in my KA Pro 600 at home with the beater blade. Easy-peasy.

Vertigo
06-09-2012, 06:53 PM
Can you guys who do large quantity everyday share some secrets for the rest of us?
Pro tip: do it while it's still scalding hot, as it gets progressively fussier the further it chills. We do maybe 4-5 yardbirds a day for tacos and burritos and stuff--just pull 'em right out of the stock they cook in, and shred them with our fingers in a deep hotel pan while they're still dripping wet and steaming. It literally takes only a few seconds.

SpikeC
06-09-2012, 06:56 PM
Ouch!

ajhuff
06-09-2012, 08:23 PM
Yeah I've always done it hot too. Pork same way. Just double glove and it's no big deal.

-AJ

Crothcipt
06-09-2012, 11:21 PM
I use tongues when I do shredding. If you cooked it long enough it should fall apart no matter what. It has to be hot though.

Andrew H
06-09-2012, 11:25 PM
I use tongues when I do shredding. If you cooked it long enough it should fall apart no matter what. It has to be hot though.

Falling apart chicken? Pork maybe.

Crothcipt
06-09-2012, 11:32 PM
My bad I should have said pork. I have done chicken that way too.

SameGuy
06-10-2012, 12:23 AM
I haven't tried pork in the KA, but two chicken breasts shred up in 30 seconds or so.

ajhuff
06-10-2012, 12:31 AM
I'd rather pull it with my hands than deal with setting up the mixer, breaking it down, and cleaning it. All a matter of where you want your bottleneck to be I guess.

-AJ

daveb
06-10-2012, 12:35 AM
Don't know about posting links but if one googled texas bbq rubs they could find a pair of gloves that would let them go into the stock after the chicken (quickly) and then pull it off the bone. Good heat protection, good control, easy clean up. I have no association with them other than satisfied customer.

Concert picnic sounds good.

SameGuy
06-10-2012, 01:54 AM
LOL AJ, it's a paddle and a bowl. The mixer sits there ready to go; I doubt it takes me more than 15 seconds to set up and take down, and the paddle washes up about as easily as two forks or tongs or whatever.

But, whatever, I'm only a home-kitchen dilettante sticking his nose into a convo that is clearly meant to discuss streamlining prep work in a pro environment. :)

Seth
06-10-2012, 11:17 AM
7767

7768



A mixer? Will have to try that. I also let poached chicken sit in cool water after about 8 minutes of 190* water in the hopes it will retain moisture. I might have to rethink that.

I am very fortunate that these concerts happen every Saturday and every Wednesday in the next community over. The music can even suck sometimes but it's all about the people.

mano
06-10-2012, 05:40 PM
Richie Havens (remember him?)

I saw him at the Filmore East in 1970. Good songs but he bored everyone with stories until someone yelled, "Why don't you sing about it, Richie?"

Looks like a good time, Seth. Ever go to the Robin Hood Dell and picnic on the lawn?

Crothcipt
06-10-2012, 05:48 PM
LOL AJ, it's a paddle and a bowl. The mixer sits there ready to go; I doubt it takes me more than 15 seconds to set up and take down, and the paddle washes up about as easily as two forks or tongs or whatever.

But, whatever, I'm only a home-kitchen dilettante sticking his nose into a convo that is clearly meant to discuss streamlining prep work in a pro environment. :)

I have seen some restaurants do this too. But I never liked the end result, just because most cooks don't pay attention to what the end result is.

JMac
06-11-2012, 12:23 PM
yeah you need to watch it, only takes a couple seconds. Gloves and your hands. The best tool in the kitchen.

VoodooMajik
06-11-2012, 01:08 PM
I use a Short Pair of Tongs and a Fork when it's still hot. Alto-Sham is my friend when working with many pork shoulders.

Well maintained blades make things so much quicker prep wise. I lend my Tojiro bread knife out alot when I see people sawing through bread.

ThEoRy
06-11-2012, 10:11 PM
It wasn't THAT many tomatoes!! :D But yeah you may have noticed in the vids I'm a huge fan of efficiency in the kitchen. Stacking products to cut is a big one. Every wasted motion drives me nuts. I train everyone to not waste a single motion. Even if its something as simple as reaching into a box for a mushroom across your cutting board drives me nuts. Seems like it's not a big deal, but if we are both cutting up a case of shrooms each, you keep reaching across the board for every one while I just tip the box over on my board right next to my left hand. That 1 second you wasted every time adds up. Even if we were cutting at the same pace, by the end of the case I would beat you by a long shot.

Parsley is another killer for some. Hate it when I see guys with the parsley all spread out thin all over the entire board, chop chop choppin away for 10 minutes like it's some huge ordeal. ,"Man I hate chopping parsley!" they always say. Some guys even bust out the two knife method thinking it's gonna help. Really all you are doing is dragging out a simple task and bruising the **** outta those herbs. Ball it up into the tightest knot you can, finely chiffonade through it once, quarter turn, finely walk through it again. Done.

Love it when I see guys with a 10" chef knife cutting up one banana at a time too. I actually have to tell people, "here look, you have this really long knife, you can just place these 5 bananas on the board like this and cut through all of them at once." Things like that just kill me inside.

If we both make 10 cuts yet you only have 12 slices while I have 60 it's because I'm being more efficient than you. Even if we were cutting at the same speed I'm still producing 5 times the results. That right there is the very definition of efficiency. It's an equal amount of work effort while producing greater results.

You guys really shouldn't have started this topic...:nunchucks:

Crothcipt
06-11-2012, 10:17 PM
Love the parsley idea. Its been years since I went ninja on some. Will have to try it out on some cilantro when someone is making pico.

UCChemE05
06-13-2012, 04:40 PM
Alto-Sham is my friend.

Of which device do you speak? Alto-Shaam looks to make lots of stuff :)

mhlee
06-13-2012, 05:02 PM
Pro tip: do it while it's still scalding hot, as it gets progressively fussier the further it chills. We do maybe 4-5 yardbirds a day for tacos and burritos and stuff--just pull 'em right out of the stock they cook in, and shred them with our fingers in a deep hotel pan while they're still dripping wet and steaming. It literally takes only a few seconds.

Playtex dishwashing gloves are awesome for dealing with hot foods.