Kitchen Knives You Need for Home Cooking: A kitchen knife is the most essential tool any amateur or professional cook should own. A good set of knives will open up a whole world of possibilities when it comes to slicing, dicing, or chopping ingredients to achieve the perfect presentation for your meals.
Knowing which knives and how many of them your kitchen collection will require varies from person to person, but you do not have to spend a fortune on tools that may only be used on special occasions. There are numerous quality knives that will not break bank accounts but still do the same job with absolute finesse.
Remember that it is the skill of the chef and not the knife that can make a great meal. Knives for any chef are no more than tools for creating food. However, good knives do have their benefits; they are usually sharper than the lower-quality ones and stay sharp for longer. Besides, a sharp knife allows greater control with cutting.
Still, with so many different types of knives on the market today that you could use in your home kitchen, the following four types of knives will be more than enough for the majority of your home cooking tasks. In addition, you will need an all-purpose Chef’s Knife for most sized cutting, a Utility Knife for smaller members of your family who have smaller hands than you do, a paring are perfect for creating a nice presentation to how one cuts their food, and Serrated knives to help better prepare certain ingredients.
Table of Contents
Price You are Expected for The Knives
There are knives available for each budget out there, from $5 to sky-high. While the price for medium-range to high-end knives varies from 50$ to 3000$ and even above that. However, there are genuine bargains in terms of money for value even under 50$ threshold.
The Chef’s knife is the most versatile knife you may ever own and a kitchen tool that is certainly worth purchasing. You will do about 75% of all cutting, chopping, and slicing with this knife, while the pairing and utility knives will do the rest of the job. It could be used for most tasks, from cutting large pieces of meat or cutting across the bone to chopping vegetables; it is also great at mincing, dicing, slicing various ingredients, and more.
A Chef’s knife has a wide triangular shape blade with 1½ inches width at its widest. The width provides extra leverage when cutting tough ingredients like meats or bones. Blade spine length varies from 6 inches to 14 inches, but around 8 inches is the most common size for home cooking. In comparison, a 10- 12 inches blade is most suited for professional chefs with culinary training.
A few Chef’s knife styles are known — French-style, German-style, and Japanese-style. The French-style Chef’s knife will have an almost perfect triangular shape with a straighter edge curving up to the tip. A German-style knife has a wider angle of triangle edge part that allows it a rocking action during usage. A Japanese-style Chef’s could have French, German, or in-between shape blades. However, it has a lighter weight and a sharper edge. It will be generally constructed from a high-quality very hard stainless steel alloy. Japanese Chef’s knives are also known under Santoku or Gyuto/Gyutou names.
The Paring knife is a sort of complement to the Chef’s knife. It is smaller in size and designed for the more delicate task a Chef’s knife is usually too big to do. Paring Knives are great for peeling and less forceful cutting jobs like cutting an apple or potato into a pretty little shape for presentation on a plate at a fancy dinner party. It is also good at boning fish or carving roasts.
The same as Chef’s knife, a paring knife has a triangular shape and 2 ½ inches to 4 inches blade length. It is designed with a small and comfortable handle and a sharp tip, so it is accurate to perform any delicate or detailed job. Unlike other types of knives, a Paring knife could be used without a cutting board because its small handle allows the user a lot of control.
Utility Knife was used for most kitchen duties when the chef’s knife was not so popularized. Nowadays, it is mainly used for simple jobs such as preparing meats and smaller cutting tasks. It is also good at filleting small pieces of meat or poultry, trimming veggies, slicing salad ingredients, mincing herbs, or peeling fruit. They can also be used to intricately carve or stylize foods for elegant presentations or garnishes and bigger tasks such as meal preparation.
Also, you will find that using a utility knife is much better suited for delicate jobs when slicing sushi rolls, for instance, since this knife allows for precision over its larger counterparts.
A utility knife is very similar to a chef’s knife. It has an average blade length between 4 and 7 inches, although it also can be anywhere in-between. In Japan, the name of a utility knife is called Petty knives are the Japanese style Utility which is so popular now in the west due to their quality material and more extended service.
Serrated Edge Knife
A serrated Edge Knife is a specialty knife for cutting bread, steak, or tomato. The bread knife is the most well-known among them. Other types have a similar serrated edge but differ in size; for example, bread knives have blades up to 10 inches long with serration along all its length, and the steak knife features very sharp serrations and a pointed tip. In contrast, the serrated tomato knife is small with a fork instead of a point.
Although serrated knives have very limiter application, they mimic the saw and excel at penetrating through ingredients with a hard outside and a soft inside. The sharp teeth make it possible to cuts finely through bread, cakes, or tomatoes exterior and not destroy their gentle interior.
If you are a kitchen novice or maybe just want to skip straight to the main course, a good knife for everyday use is all you need. They will serve you faithfully for years with only a minimal amount of care required, such as keeping them sharp (some can be sharpened when their serrations begin to dull) and cleaning them immediately after use.