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Pampered Chef: Reversible Bamboo Carving Board-Carving Tips Part 1

  1. chefbilyeu

    chefbilyeu Member

    I got this information in an email. I hope it helps all of us sell our beautiful Carving Boards! I wrote this in two parts
    Thanks to Evie Gardner for the investigative reporting and Naomi Zucarro for sharing.

    Hi everyone! I wanted to educate myself on the carving board vs. cutting
    board issue and found this website helpful. I encourage you all to do the same with other websites. Williams-Sonoma has carving boards as well, but not from bamboo. Their large reversible carving board (made from Maple Wood) is $74. I don't see dimensions on their sizes, or ours for that matter, so I can't tell if ours is the same size as their large. Ours is probably somewhere between their medium & large ones.

    I love in the information below the tips on carving....we'll want to
    incorporate some of those in our presentations. The sharp & honed carving
    knife is cruicial (our carving set comes with the sharpener & honing
    device); not to pierce the meat too often with the carving fork so juices
    can't escape; the benefit of carving the meat at the table keeps the juices
    & heat in the meat, where it belongs, until it's time to dine. Think of
    when you go through buffets--there is usually someone at the ham, roast &
    turkey 'stations' to carve the meat for you on the spot. Why? So the meat
    won't dry out. It's the best way to serve a quality cut of meat.

    I also found the info that bamboo is 16% harder & more durable than maple
    wood. (to compare Williams-sonoma's maple carving boards) & many sites that
    commented on wood starting to smell eventually, where bamboo doesn't.

    There's plenty of info out there--be sure to do your own research to educate
    yourself. Your guests will appreciate that you have done your
    homework--plus you'll be more convinced...I know I am!

    If you have further questions, contact the Consumer Applications dept at
    PC. Another tip for selling the carving board (or using it to get bookings)
    is to "paint the picture" for them. Think of Thanksgiving--standing at the
    counter with the electric knife carving up the turkey, then placing the
    turkey on a platter & quickly covering it, trying to keep the meat moist.
    Or worse yet, not covering it & serving dry turkey. Compare to a beautiflly
    decorated table (with the help of Simple Additions & our new napkins, napkin
    ring holders, placemats, etc) and the bamboo carving board with the golden
    brown turkey being carved & served right at the table. Many people at our
    shows will remember those days when Grandpa or Dad did just that. It was
    part of the meal experience. Many of the 'younger' crowd won't have a
    clue--not their fault, it's just that some of that has been lost over the
    yars. The only vision of that they'll have is from Chevy Chase's Christmas

    Keep in mind--the carving board won't even begin to appeal to some people.
    To others, it will spark enough interest either to buy it or have a show to
    get it free or at half price. It's also important to remind our guests that
    PC has many full time employees that test & try many different products
    before they choose the one for their line. Anyone can walk into a kitchen
    store & try to determine which is the best product for the best money. PC
    is the "consumer reports" of the kitchen. They've done the work for us and
    for the guests! Our customers and hosts can trust that this carving board
    is one of the very best available!
    Sep 2, 2005
  2. chefbilyeu

    chefbilyeu Member

    Part 2

    Carving is an art which in the past has been quasi-ceremonial and considered
    to be an integral part of the presentation of a meal. In the past, carving
    has often been relegated to the kitchen. Meat was brought to the table
    already sliced and often not very hot. However, carving at the table is
    gaining popularity.

    Proper carving begins with meat that is carvable. Good knives that are
    finely honed and razor sharp, the proper cutting surface, and knowledge of
    the anatomy of meat to be carved are essentials for successful carving.
    Artful carving is the result of experience, knowledge, and good equipment.
    Slices of well-carved meat are more tender than pieces that have been hacked with a dull knife.

    The preferred thickness of cuts to be carved is 1/4 to 1/2-inch for each
    slice. Some cuts of meat are easier to carve than others. One can purchase
    meat that is boned, or partially boned, instead of difficult-to-carve cuts.
    For example, a leg of lamb is quite easy to carve if the sirloin portion
    containing the hip bone is removed before the leg is cooked. The sirloin
    chops could be prepared for another meal. A square cut shoulder is difficult
    to carve, unless it is boned and rolled. Since some cuts are purchased that
    are not boneless, this discussion will emphasize those that contain bones.

    Carving Is Important
    The way meat is cooked can determine ease of carving. If a roast is cooked
    at a very high temperature, it may form an outer crust that will make
    carving extremely difficult. Yet if braised meat is overcooked, the meat
    will fall apart when it is carved, even if the knife is sharp.
    Allowing a roast to "set" after cooking will make it firm enough to carve
    properly. However, steaks and chops should be served immediately after they
    are removed from the broiler or skillet. It's preferable to have guests wait
    for a steak instead of having the steak wait for the guests.

    Whenever possible, strings and skewers should be removed in the kitchen. If
    there is a possibility that a rolled or stuffed roast may fall apart during
    carving, leave one or two strings in place. Center the roast on a carving
    board that is long enough to allow the carver to cut the meat without
    spilling on the tablecloth, and small enough to avoid having the size of the
    carving board make the roast look small and insignificant.

    Proper Equipment Is Important
    Proper equipment is essential to carve meat properly. An inadequate carving
    surface and a dull knife can ruin the most beautifully cooked meat. A good
    carving board should have either a "well" to catch juices or it should be
    built on a slight slant with a lip so the juices will collect at the back of
    the board and not run off onto the table. It is desirable to have at least
    two carving boards in different sizes -a large one for large roasts (and for
    turkey) and a smaller one for small roasts and steaks. Good carving boards
    are expensive but with proper care should last for many years. Carving
    boards are available in wood and plastic. Plastic boards are easier to
    clean. Knives should be made of carbon steel (which also means they will be
    expensive), sharpened regularly, washed properly, and stored in a location
    where they will not become dull.
    Most professional cooks prefer carbon steel because they feel that it will
    maintain a sharper edge than stainless steel. A well-made knife, if
    perfectly balanced, has a hand-ground blade, a comfortable handle, and a
    deep forged shoulder or finger guard. The tang (heel portion of the blade)
    should extend well into the handle. Knives that are held together with glue
    instead of rivets should be avoided.

    When You Carve
    Although at one time it was considered improper etiquette to stand while
    carving, it is acceptable today. Most people find it easier to carve in a
    standing position. Warm plates on which to serve the meat should be nearby
    but not in the way.

    Determine which way the meat fibers run and where the bone, if any, is
    located. Anchor the meat firmly with a sturdy two-pronged carving fork. Try
    to avoid piercing the meat with the fork too often because juices escape
    each time the fork is plunged into the meat. Most meat should be sliced
    across the grain. Meat is not made more tender by slicing across the fibers
    or grain but the shorter fibers from slicing this way make the slices seem
    more tender.

    Use a gentle sawing motion. The angle of the knife should not be changed
    once the slicing has begun. Make uniform slices and place them neatly to one
    side on the carving board if there is room, or overlap them "shingle" style
    on a warm serving platter. It is preferable to carve all meat for the first
    serving before serving anyone, so the slices can be divided evenly. If
    leftovers are anticipated, leave some meat unsliced. A solid piece of meat
    will not dry out in the refrigerator as quickly as slices.

    The examples that follow illustrate the best methods for carving certain
    meat cuts.

    Standing Rib Roast
    Beef roasts carve easier when cooked rare or medium. A meat thermometer will help take the guesswork out of cooking. Place the meat thermometer in the center of the thickest part of the roast (not touching fat or bone). When
    the desired internal temperature is obtained, remove the roast from the
    oven; 140°F for rare roast beef; 160°F for medium; and 170°F for well done.
    An oven temperature of 300 to 325°F will reduce cooking loss and will
    provide a tasty roast. High oven temperatures and overcooked roasts increase
    dryness of the meat and cooking losses. Beef roasts will carve easier if
    they are allowed to "set" for approximately 10 minutes after removal from
    the oven.

    Recommended carving steps are: (1) remove the shortribs (if present) from
    the roast and separate the backbone from the ribs by sawing through the ribs
    at the backbone. The backbone can be easily removed when the roast is
    cooked. (2) Place the cooked roast on the platter with the small cut surface
    up and the rib side to the left for a right-handed person or the rib side to
    the right for someone who is left-handed. (3) Insert the fork firmly between
    the top two ribs. (4) From the far outside edge, slice across the grain
    toward the ribs. (5) Make the slices 1/4- inch to 1/2-inch thick. (6)
    Release each slice by cutting close along the rib with the knife tip. (7)
    After each cut, lift the slice on the blade of the knife to the side of the
    platter. Hot platters should be used unless the slices will be served
    Beef Chuck Roast
    (1) Separate the muscles and carve each muscle separately because all fibers
    do not run in the same direction. (2) Carve each muscle across the grain two
    or three slices 1/4-inch to 3/8-inch thick depending on size desired for
    each person.
    Crown Roast
    (1) Remove any garnish from the center of the crown roast that may interfere
    with carving. (2) Slice down between the ribs removing one rib at a time.
    Rolled Roast
    (1) Strings may be removed before the roast is brought to the table or, if
    necessary, may be removed at the table. (2) Hold firmly in place with the
    fork and slice uniformly into 1/4-inch to 1/2-inch servings.
    Pork Loin Roast
    (1) Remove the backbone, leaving as little meat on it as possible, before
    the roast is brought to the table. (2) Place the roast on a platter, rib
    side facing the carver. (3) Insert the fork in the top of the roast. (4)
    Slice the meat by cutting closely along each side of the rib bone. One slice
    will contain a rib; whereas, the next slice will be boneless.
    (1) Cut two or three slices from the base and turn the roast so that it
    rests on the surface just cut. (2) Cut down to the arm bone near the elbow
    bone. (3) Turn the knife and cut along the arm bone to remove boneless arm
    meat. (4) Carve the boneless arm meat by making perpendicular slices. (5)
    Remove meat from each side of the arm bone and slice the boneless pieces of
    Ham Half
    (1) Place the shank end on the carver's left (right-handed person) with the
    cushion portion of the ham on top. (2) Cut along the top of the bone and
    lift off the cushion portion. (3) Place the cushion portion on a carving
    board and make perpendicular slices. (4) Cut along the leg with the knife
    tip to remove meat from the bone. Turn meat so that the thick side is down
    and continue to slice. (5) Place on the carving board with the "face" down.
    (6) Cut along the bone to remove the boneless section. (7) Place the
    boneless section on the carving board and carve across the grain. (8) Hold
    the remaining section with a fork and carve across the aitch bone. (9)
    Release the cut slice from the bone with the knife tip and lift it onto the
    Loin Steak
    (1) Hold the steak with the fork inserted at the left (right-handed person)
    and cut close around the bone. (2) Lift the bone to the side of the platter
    where it will not interfere with the carving. (3) Hold the tenderloin firmly
    with the fork and cut across full width of the steak, making wedge slices.
    (See figure 5) A suggested procedure for carving the Porterhouse steak is to
    serve each muscle separately. The bone is removed and the sirloin (the large
    muscle) can be cut into slices or wedges. Slices can also be made from the
    smaller tenderloin muscle (filet).
    Sep 2, 2005
  3. ChefNic

    ChefNic Veteran Member

    Wow, you did do your homework! Thanks! It does make me feel more comfortable talking about something that I was unsure of before!
    You never know who is in the party, and what they would be interested in.
    Researching our products, and also our recipe ingredients. Teaching the guests and hosts things that will make them want more, and they will book!
    I like your thinking - PC is "consumer reports" they have already decided what is good, and put that in the catalog, and deciding what isn't so good, and improving it, and deciding what doesn't need to be in the catalog after all.
    The Nylon Tongs... I had recently heard people say they didn't really like them. BOOM, they are gone and now we have the CHEF"S TONGS... LOVE THEM! Similar products are on all the cooking shows, Real Chef's use something similar - but not even as good (ours has the rubber tips and gravity lock!!)
    Looking at what else is on the market , and doing our homework, so we can teach our guests is part of our job too! Home Office has made that easier, and we can be assured that what we sell is the best out there at the best price!
    Sep 2, 2005
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