Whether at home or in a restaurant, whether you are a cook or a chef, the most important and frequently used tool in your kitchen is probably a knife. Basically, it won’t become food unless you cut the ingredients with a knife. The moment you hold it, it is also the time to concentrate on cooking the most. Craftsmen do not blame the equipment, but once you purchase a knife, you will use it almost semi-permanently. So it is essential to choose the product that suits the purpose and matches your skills. You can explore the different types of knives and their uses through our guide, and find the one that best suits your needs.
Moreover, we can say that kitchen knives are the flowers of kitchen utensils. A sturdy, versatile kitchen knife is great for handling meat and vegetables, but it is also great for delicate tasks like cutting fruit or chopping small herbs at the same time.
Types of Knives In Terms Of Their Uses
Chef / Kitchen Knife
A kitchen knife is used to chop vegetables or to cut large chunks of meat. The body or blade is very thick and wide, therefore, it is good to tap or soften meat. And also, because it has a sense of weight, you can apply more force when preparing the ingredients or food. Since it is called a chef knife, it actually works with almost every ingredient. Moreover, they can be used for a long time thanks to their great quality and performance.
Multi-purpose knives are slightly smaller than normal kitchen knives, but they can be used for all purposes just like their names. You can easily trim almost any ingredient, including fruits, vegetables, and cheese. Generally, chef’s knives are considered multipurpose knives, due to their special job. They have a sharp edge and blade so that they can cut or chop any ingredients that you want.
A bread knife can easily cut all kinds of bread and soft vegetables. The edge of the blade is serrated, so whether it is a hard pie peel or a soft tomato, you can cut it cleanly. Besides, there is another similar type of bread knife, that is bread knife cutters, they are also very nice to cut your bread into slices. The serrated blades are designed to cut the bread into slices easily without any mess. Even the soft bread can be cut nicely without crushing.
Since it can be handled more agilely than a large knife due to its small size, it is suitable for fine work such as peeling fruits and vegetables. It is a portable, lightweight knife that feels like part of your hand when you use it. Thanks to its small size, you can bring it anywhere portably to use outside. Of course, they are used for small tasks such as slicing the fruits, or peeling, and so on. In some cases, the fruit knives can be used in a very convenient way when you cook.
Vegetable knives are especially effective for slicing, chopping or cutting all kinds of vegetables. The blade body is wide, so you can use it with a sense of stability. Since there is a special groove in the lower part of the knife body, air enters the cutting surface, so the cutting material does not stick to the knife body. In other words, you can enjoy your cutting without hassle.
Carving Knife and Carving Fork
The carving knife and carving fork combination are mainly used for meat and poultry. It is convenient for cutting or thinning meat with a bone attached to it because the body is thin. Carving forks are useful for fixing meat and poultry or turning them into a comfortable position for grooming. Additionally, its narrow blade allows you to cut even the leg of lamb or other small parts as well. Moreover, the carving forks will give you safety when you cut the meat with a knife. You do not need to cut your finger or hand. Besides, they can also be used for cutting vegetables or fruits and else.
Chinese knives are used to slice or chop vegetables or meat. The body is large and high, so it feels more stable when chopping or thinning vegetables or meat. It’s versatile, so it’s especially popular with Asian culinary experts. Due to its large blade and heavyweight, Chinese knives would be perfect to handle the hard ingredients or any other meat with bone as well. They can perform any tasks such as chopping, cutting, mincing, etc, but be careful with your wrists not to get hurt due to their heavyweight.
Reasons of Why You Should Have the Different Kitchen Knives
If you use the kitchen knife separately for different purposes, you will reduce the labor of washing the knife two or three times during cooking. Therefore, a kitchen knife is used differently generally for four types of food such as fish, fruit, meat, and food.
If you cut fish with bones with a fruit kitchen knife, the blades of the knife can be easily damaged. In this case, you should use the knives sharp and sensitive, and kitchen knives should be classified differently according to the purpose so that the blade can be used for a long and long time.
Besides, the knives used in the kitchen have different blades, tips, weights, and shapes according to the purpose for fruit, fish, meat, vegetables, etc.,
What is amazing is that even beginner cooks can easily touch the ingredients by classifying them according to their use. Also, fish kitchen knives with thin and long curved blades, are suitable for slicing fish flesh. However, it is not suitable for cutting the fruit, so it is helpful to use a fruit knife that matches the ingredients.
How to choose a kitchen knife?
The kitchen knives commonly used at home are largely divided into European and Asian types. European-style knife with a streamlined blade, that is suitable for mincing meat and vegetables because of its weight and sharp tip. Whereas, the Santoku knife, also called the Asian knife, can handle all three types of food such as vegetables, meat, and fish with a single knife. Additionally, it is specially designed to prevent food from sticking to the blade when cutting ingredients as it has a round and light tip and has a groove on the side. Overall, this model is considered one of the representative Asian knives.
Tips to Buy a Knife
Just as you buy a variety of pots and pans depending on their usage, you should also have at least 3 types of knives for different purposes of cutting: meat, fish, and fruit. If you have a basic level knife, you can use up to five different types of knives depending on the nature of hard or soft ingredients. You can call those products as knife block sets, which come with many different purpose knives. Sometimes, they even have scissors and potato peeler as well. With just only this one set, then you do not need to purchase any other knives at all. It can solve all of your cutting or chopping problems in your kitchen at once.
Moreover, you should wash the knife immediately after cooking, then be sure to completely dry the knife and store it in a sheath. The blade should also be kept sharp and clean at all times. In general, once a month, or if you cook a lot, it is better to sharpen the knife once every 2-3 weeks. In this case, you can use electric knife sharpeners to make your work easier and convenient with a good outcome. You do not need to sharpen your blade manually, which is quite tough to do. The blade is everything when it comes to the knife, so why not choose to sharpen it with electric sharpeners.
When you choose a kitchen knife for yourself, it is recommendable to get the one that has weight balance when you hold the handle. It should feel good and comfortable, even if you hold it for a long time, only this kind of product can be used as desired. The product must fit in your hand perfectly. The weight, material, and shape of the blade are all meticulous.
Ways to Store or Maintain Your Knives
Even in the most basic dishes, knives are used almost every day. If you take care of your knife properly, it will last a lifetime and make meal preparation faster and more enjoyable. What is more, an important knife care method that is easily overlooked is the proper storage of the knife. Proper storage of the knife not only reduces the risk of accidents but also prevents damage to the body of the knife. Additionally, you can also use the knife for a longer period. Store your knives in a knife holder, a knife organizer in a kitchen drawer, or a magnetic knife rack that can be attached to the wall. Here are some tips on how to sharpen your knives and chopping skills.
Hand wash only
Washing by hand immediately after using the knife is the most important factor. It prevents decay and also prevents hygiene hazards such as the transmission of bacteria from raw chicken to fresh vegetables. Hand wash the knives with lukewarm or hot water after dissolving the detergent and wipe with a dry cloth. It is not suggested to drop the knife on the dishes stacked in the sink. In this case, there could be a risk of the knife being crushed by a heavy pot or pan. More than that, putting your hand in without knowing if there is a knife in the sink can cause serious injury.
How to keep the knife sharpening
As you might already be aware, sharp knives are safer than blunt knives. Therefore, it is recommendable for you to sharpen your knives regularly. Usually, it is best to go once a week. But be sure to use a material that is harder than the knife body. Thus, you must use a ceramic or chrome steel sharpener for your safety and convenience. In particular, you’d better keep in mind that knives with serrated blades, such as bread knives, must be entrusted to a professional company. It is better not to cut very hard ingredients such as frozen foods or bones. This is simply because the part where the blade is fixed may become loose due to the end of the blade or small debris. Additionally, when cutting hard ingredients, move the knife back and forth on the food to cut it. Most importantly, do not shake the knife from side to side.
However, if you feel that you are too lazy to sharpen the blades regularly, then there is another great option or solution for you. That is to buy the self-sharpening knives set for yourself. You do not need to repeat your knife sharpening process by yourself, you just need to pull out the knife that you want to use and keep it back to its place. When you put it back to the sheath, the blade would automatically sharpen by itself. You no longer bother to do extra work for dulled knives.
How to Use Knife’s Forever Partner Chopping Board
Chopping board, an inseparable partner from a knife, comes in a variety of materials and functions such as wood, plastic, silicone, and glass. It is cut and chopped every day, and as much as you use it, you need to manage it thoroughly. It is wise to use a separate cutting board for meat, fish, and vegetables. If there is only one cutting board, clean it immediately after trimming meat or fish, sterilize and disinfect with hot water, and dry before use. Particularly, if you cut meat and fish on a cutting board at the same time, foreign substances may settle in the gaps of the cutting board and cross-contamination, so be careful to use ingredients separately.
The wooden chopping board, which is used the most at home, is that the ingredients do not move well on the chopping board and the blade does not easily become dull when cutting food. It surely has its own benefits. However, it sucks in water well and creates a gap due to the knife, which makes it easy for food to get stuck. Also, if it is not properly managed, bacteria are prone to propagation. Therefore, it is better to choose a material such as a cypress or walnut that is resistant to moisture.
Apart from this, when washing wooden cutting boards, sprinkle salt, wait for 10 minutes, rub the cutting board with rubber gloves, and rinse with water to remove foreign substances stuck between the cutting boards with cuts. Moreover, for sterilization and disinfection, mix vinegar, salt, and baking soda, sprinkle it on a paper towel, and after about an hour, rinse with water and slowly dry in a well-ventilated place.
So far, we introduced you to the kitchen knife guides and their uses according to the different purposes. The knife block sets or electric knife sharpeners and other knife sets would be also a great gift to give to your friends or housewives. As we started our single lives out from the parents, there would be a lot of times when we have to cook by ourselves at home. Also, there would be so many friends of the same age that they are independent and eat alone. Thus, they might worry a lot about sensible housewarming gifts. Since the self-sharpening knife sets are coming with a nice box like a present, so this would be great to give. Apart from this, in the cooking program, chefs use a variety of knives to prepare ingredients as well. So, why don’t you grab one of them for yourself to have a good cooking experience?