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Mise en Place; Everything in its Place
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Have you ever jumped right into a recipe, only to find out we are missing one or more of the key ingredients? Perhaps you decide to chop the garlic while the onions are sautéing. Further down the recipe you discover another step which needs to be done before the onions and garlic overcook. The result: frustration, stress, and wasted time.

What makes the cooking process on those cooking shows and restaurant kitchens seem so effortless? Successful cooks and chefs all over the world apply a concept known as Mise en Place (MEEZ-ahn-plahs). The French definition means “everything in its place,” and it is a culinary term that refers to preparing and pre-measuring ingredients ahead of time. However, Mise en Place is more than just a term; it is a concept or a state-of-mind that when applied to any kitchen, will result in a smooth-flowing, time saving cooking process. This is especially beneficial when preparing more than one recipe.

Mise en Place involves several steps which will insure the necessary ingredients and tools are at your fingertips. The actual cooking process will be much quicker, smoother and more enjoyable!

  1. Read the entire recipe. Determine which ingredients and equipment you will need and have them nearby.

  2. Prepare the workspace.
    • Start with a clean kitchen.
    • Empty the dishwasher and remove unnecessary items off the counter tops.

  3. Do the work.
    • Preheat the oven, prepare pans, etc
    • Chop, dice, grate, and sift; pre-measure ingredients and put into small bowls. Set the bowls on a tray to easily transport them to the cooking area.

  4. Clean as you go. This is the most important step!

After dinner, simply load the dinner dishes in the dishwasher and relax!

Incorporating the simple concept of Mise en Place into your preparation process will transform your cooking experience to a more efficient and enjoyable one. In turn, we hope this leads to the inclusion of healthier and more flavorful recipes into your cooking repertoire!



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Barbara Gollman
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Last Update: September 28, 2004

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