Herbs add flavour, colour and aroma to dishes. Whenever possible use fresh herbs, which have much more fragrance and vitality than dried. Their flavour comes from the essential oils in the leaves and stalks, which are released by heat or bruising.

...Chop herbs

Step by step

1 Wash the bunch of herbs under cold running water and dry well. Pick off the leaves; the stalks can be used for infusing dishes. Place the leaves on a board and gather them together gently, without bruising, into a tight pack. Slice across them to start to reduce them in size.

2 Then, holding the knife in one hand, with the fingers of your other hand resting on the top third of the knife closest to the point, use the knife in a lever action to chop across the herbs.

3 Keep doing this, and scraping the herbs together, then chop across again. Continue in this manner until you have chopped the herbs to the required fineness.

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