General Knife Tips:
Invest in a high quality basic set (don’t buy a cheap set because it includes more knives–none of them will work very well).
- A basic knife set includes: chef’s, paring, boning or utility, slicer, bread
Chef’s Knife (Sometimes called a Cook’s Knife or French Knife)
- Used to chop, slice and dice food on a cutting board
- Buy the biggest chef’s knife you’re comfortable with. A small knife is inefficient because it cuts less. An 8-inch length is most popular for home use
- Choose a forged chef’s knife with a tapered bolster (the portion of the knife between the blade and the handle). A thick bolster prevents sharpening of the entire blade edge. Eventually after repeated sharpenings the edge develops an indentation (a swale) near the bolster so that a large portion of the cutting edge doesn’t touch the cutting board. You get bits of celery held together by strings!
- Balance should be at bolster
- Used to peel, trim and cut
- Because this knife is used closest to the hand, choose a knife that is a comfortable length for your size hand