Food choppers, whether they are electric or hand choppers, are a handy way to quickly chop food for many recipes. There are several styles to choose from, and a few tips to use in order to get the best results.
Choose a food chopper to buy. There are two basic kinds, though each has some variations. The least expensive are manual choppers. Most of these are shaped roughly like a cylinder, and you press down on the top to chop the food. They chop a small amount of food, like half an apple or half a medium-sized onion. There are also rectangular food choppers with an attachment on a hinge. The attachment has a set of blades arranged in squares, and when you put an item on top of the container and press down on the hinged panel, you cut the item into pieces which fall into the container. You can cut only a small amount at a time, but you can continue with more items quickly because the container holds more than you can chop in one slice. The second main type of food chopper is electric. These look like food processors, only smaller, and are made to chop from one to three cups of food at a time.
Pick a recipe and assemble ingredients. Many recipes that require food choppers are those that use vegetables or fruit. Garlic and onions are good foods to chop with a food chopper, as are tomatoes, carrots, celery, and apples. You can also chop nuts, and you can cut food into bite-sized pieces for toddlers to eat. If you are chopping vegetables and fruit, wash them first and cut them to a size that fits in the chopper you are using.
Chop the food. Even with electric food choppers, you may only be able to chop a portion of the ingredients at a time. With a hand chopper, you can only do a handful at once. Experiment to determine the placement that works best. With electric food choppers, the placement may not matter as long as the items fit in the chopping container. But with hand choppers, it may make a difference whether you put the skin side up or down, for example.
You will get the best results with items of a certain size. Having a chopper doesn't mean you never use your knife again, but food choppers will save time and yield uniformly sized pieces. Some trial and error may be necessary until you get used to your chopper. Depending on the recipe, you may need to chop each ingredient separately rather than just throwing them in all together.