1. To set up the mandolin, insert one of the teeth blades into the back of the mandolin, perpendicular to the main blade. Tighten the knobs as tightly as you can so that the teeth are securely fastened in the mandolin. The spacing of the teeth will determine how wide each of the carrot pieces will be. If you flip the mandolin over and can’t see the teeth on the front, flip it back over and tighten the knob in the center of the mandolin. This knob adjusts the platform on the slicer and determines the thickness of the carrot pieces. 00:38
2. To julienne with the mandolin, hold the mandolin in your non-dominant hand, perpendicular to your body. With your dominant hand, slide the carrot down the length of the mandolin, over the teeth and blade, away from your body. Be very careful to keep your fingers away from the extremely sharp mandolin blade. For safer slicing, use the mandolin’s included blade guard to push the carrot down the mandolin. 02:14
3. To slice with the mandolin, flip it over and loosen the knobs on the sides. Remove the teeth from the mandolin. Push the carrot down the length of the mandolin, away from your body. To adjust the thickness of the slices, tighten or loosen the center knob on the back of the mandolin. 03:28
4. Overall, when using a mandolin, tighten the blades so they are secure and won’t move around. Make sure to keep your fingers away from the blade of the slicer. Chef Bryon suggests forming fingers into a claw to keep fingers out of the way of the blade, much like you would when using a knife. Mandolins require constant adjustment based on the desired cut. It is a good idea to make a few test slices and then to adjust the mandolin based on your desired slice thickness. 05:08
What You'll Need
- Mandolin slicer
Mandolins are great tools for chefs because they allow for a much thinner, finer cut than a knife can achieve.
One of the most popular mandolin brands is the Japanese brand, Benriner. This brand is very popular among chefs, so much so that some chefs refer to all mandolin slicers as “Benriners.” Chef Bryon notes that Benriner mandolins can be found at restaurant supply stores or purchased online.
Because the blades on mandolins are so sharp, great care must be taken to protect fingers when slicing. This can be done using the mandolin blade guard. For added hand protection, opt for using a cut-resistant glove, which can be found online or at most kitchen supply stores. These gloves are often made of synthetic knit material that resists cutting, allowing more control over what is being sliced without the added danger or worry of cutting yourself.