I did a lot of cooking over the weekend taking food to friends who moved into their new house, caring casseroles in action. I loved using my new knives. Some very special ladies gave them to me and they are so fun with their bold colors and so sharp. So, I started thinking about knives, how to care for them, what the different kinds are and how each knife is made for a specific task. The starting place for any joyful and functioning kitchen is a set of good sharp knives. It makes your prep work so much easier and faster. So if you don’t have good knives start by buying one at a time till you have a set. You will be glad you did. But don’t get discouraged with so many kinds, shapes and sizes. Reminds me of my golf game. I have all these clubs in my golf bag and I usually end up using 3 or 4 clubs the whole 18 holes. Knives are like that. You will find you have a few favorites that you use for everything. Make sure those few favorite ones are of good quality and the right size for you. Below are my favorite ones. Let me know your favorites and why. We can learn from each other.
Tidbit: Always hand wash your knives drying them thoroughly. This will help keep them sharp. Store them in a knife block or in sleeves. Putting them in a drawer with other utensils will dull the blades.
Tidbit Tip: Never use the sharp side of your knife to scrape food off of your chopping block; turn it over and use the dull side.
Chef’s knife: The blade is broad and averages about 8 inches long and is used for chopping, slicing, dicing, julienning, or mincing. The broad side can be used to crush garlic. There are smaller, less broad chef’s knives available.
Santoku Knife: Compared to a chef’s knife, the Santoku is usually shorter and has a thinner blade. Oval indentations on the blade’s sides reduce friction to produce clean, uniform cuts minimizing sticking. This is my favorite knife.
Bread Knife: The blade is straight, serrated and at least 8 inches long. It is used to cut through soft or crusty breads, cakes, and baked goods. I also like using it for tomatoes.
Paring and Utility Knives: Paring knives look like small chef’s knives with a tapered blade usually 3 to 4 inches. They are used for peeling and slicing fruits and vegetables. Utility knives are larger paring knives with a slightly curved blade. They are used for carving small cuts of meat.
So, like golf clubs, knives do have specific tasks they are made for but you can play 18 holes with only a few clubs and you can chop, dice, mince and crave with a few knives.
Playing Golf with my husband Bill, who is a great golfer, in N. Myrtle Beach, SC