Whether you’re a kitchen whiz or just cooking because you have to, one thing’s for sure: the MVP of your kitchen is that trusty knife. But here’s the scoop – everyone agrees that a dull knife can be scarier than a horror movie. Why? Well, with a dull blade, you’re pushing harder, and that means more chances for slip ‘n’ slide action. Plus, you’ll tire out quicker, and tired hands are like magnets for accidents.
So, to keep your fingers intact and your chopping game strong, it’s time to show your knives some love. Let’s dive into some top tips for knife care that’ll keep your kitchen adventures both safe and enjoyable.
Choose The Right Chopping Board
These days, you come across chopping boards made of glass and stainless steel on the market. Honestly, it’s like they were designed by folks who have a grudge against knives! When you’re constantly slamming your kitchen knives into hard, smooth surfaces like glass and steel, you’re basically giving them a fast pass to dullness. Plus, there’s a higher chance of your blade edges chipping. Some people even go rogue and chop directly on their kitchen countertops – which, believe it or not, is no friend to your knives either.
So, for the sake of your knives, stick with chopping boards made of plastic, wood, or bamboo. They’re kinder to your blades and will keep them sharper for longer.
Related reading: Best Kitchen Knives In India
Storing your knives in a tray alongside your regular cutlery might seem convenient, but it’s a recipe for disaster. Why? Because those poor knives end up banging against each other, getting dents, and even chipping. Plus, it’s like a ninja obstacle course – you never know when a sharp blade might decide to say hello.
So, here’s the lowdown on knife storage: go for a knife block if you can. They take up some counter real estate, which can be a bummer for small kitchens, but they’re like a safe house for your knives – no accidents and no damage.
If counter space is a luxury, consider a magnetic bar that you can hang behind your kitchen countertop. It’s like a magic wand for your knives, keeping them secure and ready for action.
But, if none of those options float your boat, at least use a blade guard before tossing your knives in a drawer. That way, the blades won’t go all WWE on each other and get all scratched up.
After you’ve put those knives to work, make sure to give them a good wash with some dishwashing soap and a gentle scrub – none of that abrasive stuff, please. Dry it off immediately and store it away. Leaving food gunk or acidic ingredients like lime hanging around can stain your blade, and we don’t want that.
And here’s a golden rule: don’t let your knives take a bath in the kitchen sink. It’s not a good idea because it can be risky business, and your knives might turn into rusty relics in no time. So, soaking is a no-no. And stay away from soaps with citrus extract or bleach – they’re not friends with your knives either.
Now, if you happen to spot some rust creeping in, don’t panic. Grab some WD-40 and give it a shot. If that doesn’t do the trick, use the abrasive side of a Scotchbrite pad. Gently scrub away that rust, and your knife will thank you later.
Use Right Type of Knives
A chefs knife without a doubt is the most versatile kitchen knife. If you’re keeping just one trusty blade in your culinary arsenal, it should be a chef’s knife. But, if you’re putting your Santoku or chef’s knife through the wringer by hacking away at meat and pumpkin, you’re setting them up for a dull destiny – and nobody wants that.
So, here’s the game plan: aim to have a solid lineup of 2-3 knives in your kitchen. Your chef’s knife or Santoku will handle everyday chopping, slicing, and dicing duties like a champ. But when it’s time to tackle fish and meat, bring in the heavy artillery – the butcher’s knife. It’s built for the job with its beefy, sturdy design.
And don’t forget about your paring knife. It makes peeling ginger, onion, garlic, and other fruits and veggies a breeze. With this knife crew by your side, you’ll be ready for any culinary adventure that comes your way!
Maintaining Sharpness of Your Knives
So, how do you tell when it’s time to sharpen your knives? Well, there are some telltale signs. When your knife is feeling a bit dull, it’ll make this distinct crunchy noise as it crushes through your ingredients. Sharp knives, on the other hand, glide through your food like a hot knife through butter. A good old tomato test can also reveal the magic – Cut a tomato using a sharp and a dull knife and see the difference for yourself! While a sharp knife can slice paper-thin tomatoes, dull knives crush the skin and squishes the flesh.
Now, let’s talk about sharpening your knives. Before you dive into your chopping marathon for the day, give your knife a quick honing. This helps align those micro serrations on the blade and keeps it in top form. You can use a whetstone for the sharpening process, but remember to soak it in water first. Then, run your knife along the stone at an angle, covering the full length of the blade. This video from Epicurous provides excellent insights on the right way to sharpen blades.
Alternatively, you can bring in the cavalry with manual or electric knife sharpeners if that’s more your style. Either way, a sharp knife is a happy knife, and it’ll make your kitchen adventures a whole lot smoother!