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Learing to use chop sticks

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What is the best food to start on?, some sites say beans others say mini marshmellows? I have 2 different sizes one long one smaller what is the best and most used?

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  1. How long is your long and how short is the short ones? Beans are kind of good for practice if you are already pretty good and want to get even better. For beginners, I think marshmallows are better.

    1. Use them when you eat your meals, no other silverware. If you are hungry, you will learn to use them.
      Try both sizes, and see what works for you.

      1. One set is around 10 " and blunt at the ends the other is about 7 and is tapered, As I understand one is from Japan the other is from China.I know I sound silly but I do want to learn and sit at night and play around with them. Any advice I can get is much welcombe

        2 Replies
        1. re: catface1

          <As I understand one is from Japan the other is from China.>

          Spot on. I was going to tell you that based on the blunt vs tapered, but you already know. Aside from the style, I do prefer 10" over 7", but this is personal preference. I think using chopsticks are much like riding bicycle. There are guidance, but ultimately it is about practice.

          1. re: catface1

            As a chopstick lifer, I would suggest for you to try the wood or bamboo ones first. The reason being that they tend to balance better being lighter, in my opinion, you get a better feel for the grip, both in the fingers and at the tip when you are actually picking up morsels of food. The plastic ones are fine I think if you have large hands and actually need to feel the weight for a better balance. If you find that you have a real problem with the grip some of the Japanese chopsticks have grooves which may help.

            Also once you have taken hold a piece of food keep a firm but relaxed hold of the chopstick and move it to your bowl/plate in one fluid motion. One thing I noticed with new users is that they tend to hesitate and change the hold position causing the piece of food to wiggle and lose balance.

          2. thankyou Chemicalkinkentics i will endure and work with both,if I just use my chop sticks maybe I will loose some weight .

            1 Reply
            1. re: catface1

              One basic move is to hold the bowl of rice and topping close to your mouth and shovel the contents in, so perhaps not.
              But I agree, practice, practice, practice. At home.

            2. thankyou sr44 I will practice and not in public, otherwise I could end up on YOU TUBE.

              1 Reply
              1. re: catface1

                I don't think you would want to record yourself, but you might find some useful info on Youtube. It can be very helpful.

              2. A long time ago, the owner of a Chinese place made me what he said was how children learned. He put a rubber band around the middle of the two so they stayed together. It was so sweet of him (I wasn't a child!) I kept them for a good while just for fun. It did give me an idea of what to do, for sure.

                1. I would start with the basic Chinese type, about ten inches long, usually of bamboo or plastic. One end is round, the other square. The round end goes into the food.

                  Get a mess of chow mein from your favorite carryout place. Lately, I've been favoring the kind with very fine noodles. Take it home and eat it. Repeat as often as necessary.

                  Noodles are easier to start with, because they will hang together. You will probably drop rice at first.

                  I'm not sure if watching an expert helps that much. My grip is unconventional — it's not exactly like the one my Chinese friends used. One stick rests in between the thumb and forefinger, just above midway. The round part rests against the tip of the next-to-last finger. Then the other stick is held with the thumb and next two fingers so that the round ends match up. The second stick is moved against the first, which remains stationary, (I am assuming the normal number of fingers here.)

                  Bamboo sticks can vary in diameter. I have a bunch of them, and I always match them so the ends are the same size.

                  After mastering noodles, move on to rice. With practice, you should be able to pick up a single grain of cooked rice. Then you will know that you are ready to use them in public.

                  The inexpensive Japanese type made of unfinished pine are essentially the same, only shorter. I find the better ones with the more pointed ends more difficult to use.

                  With a great deal more practice, you might be able to snatch flies out of the air. See the film "Yojimbo" for an example.

                  Good luck and good eating!

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: GH1618

                    I found softer things were a lot more forgiving learning to use chopsticks then something hard like carrots.

                    Sticky rice got me started in the right direction and I quickly moved on to single grains of regular rice.

                    Long chopsticks are easier for me to use but, they require finer control in use. If my wrists or hands hurt, long chopsticks are painful to use.

                    Short chopsticks from your normal take-out are really hard for me to use. I think it has to do with the exaggerated motions required to pick up food.