Should I chop, dice or mince? What does that even mean?! How am I supposed to know how big or small to cut my veggies?!
Chop: a pretty large, chunky piece of vegetable (right)
Dice: medium sized veggie (middle)
Mince: smallest cut (left)
Why do we need to understand the difference? Well, the author of the recipe selected a certain size based on how long it would take the veggies to cook and the resulting texture or “mouth feel” of the final dish.
Now that you know why there are different sizes of cuts you can cut up veggies to suit your preference. Be aware the cook time and mouth feel will change with your choices, but you don’t have to follow the recipe exactly. Maybe you are making a cucumber salad and the recipe calls for the cukes to be “thinly sliced” but you prefer to have big chunks of cukes on your fork so you choose to cut thick slices and then cut those in half. Bravo! Make the recipe your own.