Restaurants want us to cut our food with scissors

Illustration for article titled Restaurants want us to cut our food with scissors
Photo: GrashAlex (iStock)

Oh, you read the headline and expect some sort of scissor take-down, right? Scissors, how ridiculous, those are for construction paper and plastic packaging removal guaranteed to slice your finger off. But do not adjust your screens, readers, here is our honest thought on the matter: Scissors are a great utensil. We are all for scissors at the table.

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New York Magazine called our attention to the apparent trend, mostly evidenced at pizzerias and Korean barbecue restaurants. Diners sit down, order, and when their food arrives, it comes not with knives or pizza cutters, but with scissors. Brilliant. We’ve spotted this at Korean barbecues and the houses of parents with small children—you can snip a hot dog into pieces in three seconds with scissors—but we’re heartily here for scissors’ place at pizzerias.

I don’t have to tell you that pizza cutters are trash. Trash! Especially when they’re dull, using one to cut a pizza is like trying to chop down a redwood with a butter knife. Pizza cutters apply pressure only in one direction, downward, smooshing the crust, dragging toppings everywhere, and still not quite separating your desired slice. Seeing as these things are probably too unwieldy to drop at every table, scissors are a wonderful solution. Because they exert pressure in two directions, they’re less likely to compress the crust downward.

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What other culinary uses for scissors have we not yet embraced? Pasta cutting? Bread slicing? Cake dividing? Okay, maybe not the latter.

Kate Bernot is a freelance writer and a certified beer judge. She was previously managing editor at The Takeout.

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DISCUSSION

hendenburg3
Cayde-6's Unloaded Dice

Scissors would actually crush the crust MORE, not less.

Since a pizza roller blade circular, it is actually distributing the force from the user into the crust at roughly a 45 degree angle. And since the roller is, well, rolling, it’s constantly moving along the length of the pizza. This means that the roller is doing more of a slicing action. And especially if you are cutting a pizza that doesn’t have a thin crust (which brings up the question of why you aren’t having a pizza with a thin crust), the rolling action actually deceases friction between the blade and the food (protip: a pizza cutter also works better than a knife on any large pan-formed item that’s thinner than the radius of the pizza cutter, such as brownies and fudge), meaning that you don’t need to exert as much force to cut.

Compare that to using a pair of scissors, where all of the force is being directed roughly perpendicular to the crust of the pizza. This forms a crushing action, analogous to an axe, which doesn’t so much cut as simply exert a lot of force over a small cross-sectional area. Then, of course, there is the practicality of cutting a hot pizza with scissors. This would put your hand in very close proximity to very hot cheese. Secondarily, I would dare anyone to say that they could cut a straight line through a pizza with scissors.

That said, scissors do have their time and place in cooking.  Korean BBQ is one of those times.