One of my all-time favorite topics, go figure, has to do with one of my favorite tools in the kitchen, knives! Today I share the essential 3 knives plus 1 tool that every home cook, chef, and ‘wanna-a-be’ should have in their knife block. In addition to my top 4 essentials, I have also provided a list of “nice to haves” that are great add-ons to your knife block once the essentials have been accounted for.
· Chef Knife: Your workhorse! Your chef knife, on average, is around 7 – 9 inches in length and will no doubt, become the most used knife in your kitchen. From chopping herbs to slicing onions and carving, this one will be your go-to!
· Pairing Knife: around 4 inches in length, your pairing knife is ideally used for smaller tasks, like topping strawberries or trimming the tail ends off veggies.
· Serrated Knife: Perfect for slicing tomatoes, grapes, or bread, the blade’s “teeth” grip onto waxy or stubborn surfaces and gently work their way through the tough exterior. If you try slicing bread with a chef knife, well, try and let me know how that goes! All joking aside, set yourself for success and use the right tool for the job.
· Honing Steel: Ok, this isn’t a knife, but rather helps to realign your blade after continuous use. Unlike a knife sharpener, a honing steel re-aligns the blade’s edge making it function at full capacity. Just make sure you know how to use your steel before starting or you can easily scratch or chip your knife. A knife sharpener, which actually removes a minute layer of metal, should only be done a few times a year where your honing steel can be used daily.
Nice to Haves:
· Petty or Utility Knife: Just a little longer than your pairing knife, this is great for cutting lemons, limes and other smaller items where a chef knife may be too large and a pairing, too small.
· Santoku Knife: The divots on the side of the knife, make cutting starching items, like potatoes, a synch as they don’t stick to the side of the blade. Genius, right?
· Shorter Serrated Knife: Great for halving those smaller tomatoes, grapes and even small baguettes!
· Slicer: Not pictured, but carving your thanksgiving turkey to whole roasted chicken, and even slicing melon in half, the long blade of your slicer will cut across large items and roasts with ease and grace.
At the end of the day, the one tip I want to leave you with, is to not only set yourself for success by having the right tools to succeed, but using the right one for the job at hand. Cheers to many delicious meals around The Table Together!
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Founder and true believer in the power of bringing people around The Table Together!