Almost all of my savory cooking begins with sautéed onions. I've got to dice the onions nice and evenly first. This used to take me a long time until I took a class at the Bernal Cutlery, a rad knife shop in San Francisco. I think the single most important thing I learned in this class was how to chop an onion quickly. I'd like to help you level up your veggie prep skills too!
This wizardry is possible because onions are naturally layered. If you take advantage of this geometry, you can use relatively few cuts to yield nicely diced onions really quickly.
If any of the steps in this Instructable are unclear, please take a look at the video for reference!
Step 1: Gather Your Supplies!
You will need the following things to embark upon this adventure:
- An onion.
- A knife.
- A cutting board.
Step 2: Split the Onion
Split your onion in half "lengthwise" - from tip to tip.
Step 3: Trim the Onion
Cut the pointy bit off of both halves.
Step 4: Peel the Onion
Peel off the outer skin. There's sometimes a thin translucent skin under the outer skin. Vegetables are fascinating. You can peel this layer off too.
Step 5: Planar Bisection!
This is where it gets interesting!
Keep the onion split-side-down on the cutting board. Carefully holding the onion down, slice into the onion from the trimmed face. Cut almost all the way back to the root end (but don't cut all the way through!). Pull your knife back out.
Step 6: Longitudinal Slices
Keep the onion split-side-down on the cutting board. Make a series of vertical cuts lengthwise side-by-side. Again, make these cuts almost all the way through the tail, but stop just short of cutting the onion apart.
Step 7: Voila!
Last cutting step! Take your knife and make a series of narrowly spaced slices perpendicular to the cuts you just made.
Wow! Magically diced onions appear!