3 Essential Knives for Every Cook
No matter how you slice it, good sharp knives are critical to fast efficient cooking. Having the proper knives makes a chef’s life so much easier. And a sharp knife is much safer than a dull one. So don’t be the dull knife in the drawer.
Classic Chef’s Knife
How to Use It: A classic chef’s knife is the most important knife in your collection. For a more versatile and useful knife, look for one that is 8-10 inches. Once again, the sharper your blade, the safer, and a bigger blade is safer too. It’s called the chef’s knife for a reason; it will be used 80-90% of the time for the tasks you need to perform, including slicing and dicing everything from fruits to nuts, and all the meat in between.
How to Use It: A paring knife works for smaller jobs, like mincing, such as garlic, shallots, or strawberries. Finer details of cooking should be performed with this more precise knife. This knife isn’t for the hard veggies, or tougher jobs. You shouldn’t have to use pressure to get the job done. If you are, upgrade to a larger knife.
Serrated Knife (bread knife)
How to Use It: The bread knife is especially useful for foods with waxy surfaces, such as tomatoes, pineapples, watermelons, citrus, and peppers. The “teeth” of the blade can grip and cut through the exteriors without slipping off the surface. This is not a chopping knife. Take advantage of the sawing motion that the teeth afford.
Remember, when purchasing knives, they are a lifetime investment, and if well cared for, and kept sharp, they will last decades. Many chefs use the same set of knives most of their career, and keep them in a pouch, so no one will accidentally pouch one.
Rachel Ray’s knife set is a good place to start. It of course has more knives than we discussed her, but it’s a great value and on sale thru 10-31-16 for 50% off.