What everyone ought to know about knives

Here's a great post from our friend Andrew Zimmern @andrew zimmern on Knife Care 101 - Knife Care 101 Every chef says the same thing, “If I had to pick one tool I couldn’t live without, it’d have to be my knife.” Guess what, it’s a cliché… but it’s true. When it comes to gadgetry, I am all about the latest and greatest new phone, tablet, watch and camera. But in my kitchen? Forget about it. Aside from my immersion circulator, you won’t find anything but the basics at our house. Enameled cast-iron pots, wood cutting boards, tasting spoons… I’ve used the same type of equipment for decades.

Every chef says the same thing, “If I had to pick one tool I couldn’t live without, it’d have to be my knife.”  Guess what, it’s a cliché… but it’s true. When it comes to gadgetry, I am all about the latest and greatest new phone, tablet, watch and camera. But in my kitchen? Forget about it. Aside from my immersion circulator, you won’t find anything but the basics at our house. Enameled cast-iron pots, wood cutting boards, tasting spoons… I’ve used the same type of equipment for decades.

From hardware stores to high-end kitchen galleries, you can find knives ranging from twenty bucks to hundreds of dollars. All new knives feel pretty sharp, so is spending the extra cash worth it? Yes, 1,000 percent. Forged, high-carbon steel or high-carbon stainless steel hold their edge well (less sharpening needed, but you should still hone the blade regularly). One high-quality knife should last you decades; you will blow through a dozen crummy ones in that amount of time.

Like any quality, handcrafted item however, your knife’s longevity depends on how you care for it. Follow these rules and your knives will outlast you.
Use the appropriate cutting surface.

Not only does the sound of chopping on ceramic, glass, acrylic and tile give me the willies, it can chip your blade, too. And I don’t care if your countertop sales guy told you that you don’t even need a cutting board if you opt for granite. Instead, opt for wood and polypropylene surfaces, which are softer materials and “give” under the blade. If the knife can leave a cut line in the board, your cutting board is sufficiently soft. Here's a link to the main story!

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