Culinary basics-What is Mise en Place?
Mise en place (French pronunciation: [mi zɑ̃ ˈplas]) is a French culinary phrase which meant “putting in place”, as in set up. It is used in professional kitchens to refer to organizing and arranging the ingredients (e.g., cuts of meat, relishes, sauces, par-cooked items, spices, freshly chopped vegetables, and other components) that a cook will require for the menu items that are expected to be prepared during a shift. The practice is also effective in home kitchens.
The Importance of Mise en Place
I know what you are thinking,” I thought this was a culinary guide for novice cooks and now you are throwing some fancy French terminology at us.”
All mise en place, pronounced MEEZ ahn plahs, means is to have all your ingredients prepared and ready to go before you start cooking. Translated, “ to put in place.”
It’s kind of like when you go on a trip, first you make sure you have everything you need and are not forgetting anything, then fold everything nice and neatly so it fits into your bags. Or how about when you are changing the oil in your car. Wait a minute, who changes their oil anymore? How about balancing your checkbook? You get all your cancelled checks and deposit slips in order by arranging them by date or number before you start reconciling your statement. If you don’t, you know you will be going back and starting all over from the beginning.