Following on from last week’s post about kitchen knives, here is a quick buyers guide for them. It’s all very well telling you which knives are useful for what purpose but if we don’t give you a little help with buying them we aren’t very good at our job are we?
As a leading steakhouse in Blackpool, our chef is understandably very attached to his knives. He regards his set as an extension of his professional personality and an expression of his seriousness in his work. While we don’t have the same opinion of our own knives at home, we have appreciated his advice, which is why we are passing it on to you.
What to look for in kitchen knives
Here are a few features you should look for in your kitchen knives whether you’re a professional or keen home cook.
The most important factor when looking for a new kitchen knife is the quality of the steel. Not all steel is made equal and it is important to spend as much as you can comfortably afford on the quality of the material. Look for forged steel, made from a single piece and that has been thermally treated.
A single piece means strength, the same steel runs from the tip of the blade all the way down the handle. This gives the blade strength and longevity. It should also offer great balance. Forging means the steel is flexible and strong. Thermal treatment adds corrosion resistance and durability to the material so your knives will last longer.
A single piece of steel adds balance but if the join between the handle and the steel is poor, it won’t be comfortable to use. Therefore, check carefully where the handle meets the blade and that it is comfortable in the hand. If you’re a budding chef, you will spend many hours a day holding these knives so comfort is key.
Even if you’re a home cook, if you’re not comfortable, your hand may shift during use which could increase the risk of injury.
Sharpness isn’t necessarily a quality to look for at the point of purchase but becomes important once you get them home. However, it is so vital that it really needs mentioning here. A sharp knife is a safe knife. It takes less effort to cut, needs less pressure and therefore is less prone to slipping.
A sharp knife will also require less effort on your part, something you will be thankful for if you’re embarking on a career in the kitchen!
Buying a set of kitchen knives can be exciting whether you’re training to be a chef or cooking at home. They represent an investment in your passion and can literally transform the way you cook!