hintsandthings.co.uk »Kitchen

How to sharpen your knife skills in the kitchen and knife safety tips.



How to Sharpen Knife
Skills in the Kitchen

Helpful
suggestions with safety in mind from

Alicia Shea

As
a girl, I (Alicia Shea) was impressed by the knife handling skills of Benihana chefs and circus knife throwers that tossed those blades so skilfully.
They never faltered and had all their fingers.

Nowadays
the need to “improve skills regarding knife techniques” is foremost in
the recently published results of Bon Appetit’s 10th Annual Readers’
Survey.

I
wondered what the results meant. First, I thought about how people wanted
to use a knife the same way they see it done on TV. But what knife
techniques do people really need to understand? Are there special things
cooks do with knives I haven’t learned in many years of cooking?

Since
there was no supporting information with the survey’s summary, I’m
offering these suggestions to cooks who want to improve their knife
skills: 

1.  Forget what celebrity and iron
chefs do with knives – they’re professionals. They do it for a living.
Sure, it looks real fancy when they go at almost the speed of light
chopping onions or parsley, but those routines take much practice and
special skills to perfect. 
 

2.  
Purchase good knives and keep
them sharp. Learn how to use a steel or honing stone.

3.  
Don’t hold a knife in such a
manner that draws the sharp edge towards you. Too many people have been
hurt slicing a bagel in half.


4.  
When slicing round ingredients
like onions, first cut them in half. Then place the flat end on the
cutting surface and slice or chop. Trying to steady round items while
chopping or slicing means a trip to the hospital.

large knife on a cutting board with a halved lemon

5.  
Always curl fingertips in and
under your knuckles to hold the item you’re cutting. 

6.  
Wield a knife at your own pace.
Don’t worry about going slow. Keeping your fingers safe is more
important. 

7.  
Learn how to rock a knife rather
than drawing it across the object like a saw. For example, when slicing
carrots place the knife tip on the cutting surface and lift only the
handle leaving the tip of the blade on the surface, then rock the knife.
It’s this technique that makes celebrity chefs look so cool and fast.

8.  
Keep a first-aid kit in the
kitchen in case you need it.

 

All
in all, my suggestions pay special attention to safety first. 

Remember to
use good knives, go slowly and keep fingers and hands out of harm’s way
and
don’t smoke! 

a bandaged finger I did once, cut the tip of a finger off and went to the
hospital. The ER doctor asked me if I smoked. I responded, “That’s a
weird question.” She
explained. “If you did smoke, the capillaries in your finger tips would
be bad and stitching them back together wouldn’t save your finger
tip.”

Visitor
feedback:-

I’m no chef but love to cook and something I
stress to family and friends who join me in the kitchen is to choose the right size knife for the job to avoid accidents and cut down on
the time needed to do what you are doing.

Joe Price