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Quick Tips On Knives

Posted Jul 31 2009 11:53am
Quick Tips on Knives

There are many different types of knives out there to choose from. Each blade performs a specific task, so knowing the different types of kitchen knives can help a cook work more efficiently and safely.

Paring knives have a short, pointy blade and are between two and four inches long. They are best used for scoring, peeling veggies, removing fine bones, and anything else you that requires a point close to your hand.

Serrated blades are necessary for cutting anything that’s crusty on the outside and delicate on the inside. They are used in a sawing motion, and a key to its use is to not press down too heavily, lest you squash whatever you’re slicing.

Chef’s knives are your workhorse in the kitchen. They work for anything, especially chopping vegetables and getting through heavy cutting jobs like slicing a pumpkin or cutting through chicken bones. The knife handle is rocked up and down with one hand while the fingers of the other hand rests lightly on the back of the blade When it comes to chef’s knives, it’s super important to try them out at the store before settling on a model.

The word santoku loosely translates as 'three virtues' or 'three uses', a reference to the three cutting tasks the knife performs so well: slicing, dicing, and mincing. The santoku's blade and handle are carefully designed to work in harmony by matching the blade's width/weight to the weight of blade tang and handle. Santoku knives are best known for their sharp edges, either beveled or hollow ground, which enhances their cutting performance. Another feature is the 'granton edge' release pattern (scalloped) on the blades that not only adds style, but helps to release thin slices and sticky food after slicing.

The fillet knife is both flexible and thin, the blade can easily get into places that would be impossible for a typical kitchen knife. It can be used to shave away thin sections of roast beef for baking, broiling, or pan frying. Fillet knives also work very well with cutting thin strips of chicken and steak for use in a number of different dishes.

Not too long ago I went knife shopping and found that the knife that works best for me is the Santuko knife. It works for everything I need to do around the kitchen. Although I have a fillet knife as well, you never know when you are going to need to skin some fish. I hope this post is helpful for anyone out there that needs a knife but just doesn't know which one!
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