Parts Of A Knife – Anatomy Of A Chef’s Best Friend
Knives are a crucial part of everyday life, and no kitchen is complete without them. They come in many different shapes and sizes, but each knife has its own function to help you get things done easily. Understanding the parts of a knife will make it easier to pick out which one you need for any given task. In order to know how to use a knife properly, it’s important that you understand the basics about knives before picking one up from your local hardware store or online retailer. With this guide on hand, there should be no problem finding the right blade for every job!
A kitchen knife is a versatile, multifunctional tool that can be used for slicing and dicing fruits and vegetables to preparing meals. A good quality blade will last a lifetime with proper care, but there are many different types of knives available on the market. In this blog post we’ll discuss some of the parts of a knife as well as give you some tips on how to choose your next kitchen knife! Click here to read more about choosing the right kitchen knives!
Parts Of A Knife Identified
The blade is the sharpened, one or two-sided cutting edge of a knife that extends from the handle up to and along the spine. The end portion of some blades may have a point for piercing or stabbing, carving, etc. Most blades consist of three sections: a “tang”, a “shank” and a “point”. Knife makers often label blade tangs as follows:
1) Full Tang – The full tang runs all the way through the grip handle, typically sandwiched between two pieces of wood or plastic. This construction provides more force on the breaking/ cutting point because there is metal behind it absorbing energy, but also makes it harder to remove from its handle since it’s essentially a single piece running through.
2) Tapered Tang – The tang extends only part way into the handle, with metal visible at either end and a cutout plastic/ wood section in the middle. This allows easier removal from its handle but is not as strong as full tang.
3) Hidden Tang – A design that keeps the knife’s sharpened edge closer to the center of gravity (balance point), provides greater control and better distribution of weight (force). However, it requires more careful construction due to difficulty in fitting such a blade within its handle without weakening or compromising structural integrity.
4) Rat Tail Tang – A small, thin strip of metal which is pinned between two halves of the grip handle to provide strength at this critical junction; typically seen on knives with large blades and short tangs.
5) Taped Rat Tail – A combination of a tapered tang and a rat tail that provides the strength of a full tang without visible metal at either end of the handle.
6) Exposed Tang – Only slightly protrudes from grip handle, still allowing easily removable from a grip without visible metal. Provides reasonable structural integrity but is not as strong as full or hidden tang construction. One can easily see exposed blade metal where it meets grip sides, usually seen on smaller fixed-blade knives such as those used for hunting or camping purposes. There may be one or several pieces of this type connected to form a “tang”. If there are, one would be called a “partial tang”.
7) Full Exposed – The full length of the cutting edge is visible at all times, providing maximum structural integrity and strength. This design makes it harder to repair or replace knife parts should there be wear or damage that weakens their structure beyond functionality, but makes for overall sturdier construction. Such knives are more suited for heavy duty uses such as chopping wood. Full exposed blades can be either hidden or tapered with no protrusion outside the grip handle.
Edge is the sharpened cutting portion of a blade.
On knives, this part usually runs from the shoulder to the point. The “working edge” is that section that has been sharpened and therefore with which the user will come into contact (some folding knife blades may be partially serrated or have dual edges). Even with utility knives such as box cutters with disposable blades, there is still some functional edge after it has become dull; in most cases either to make an opening in a box or for pulling the tape off a surface. A pocket knife’s blade (if not serrated) and its folding property make it possible to conceal the inside handle when not in use.
A term used by knifemakers and others who work with metal blades to describe the cross-sectional geometry of blade taper; usually expressed as a percentage or fractions of the blade length. Most knives are “whetstone ground”, meaning that they have flat bevels on each side, sharpened at an angle which results in about 20 degrees (the actual number is somewhat variable) on the sharper side and 80 degrees (again, this varies based on different standards) on the other. The smaller second angle makes for easier sharpening but weaker blades because it takes away more material than necessary.
The most common edge grinds are:
- A) Convex – strongest edge geometry because there is no primary bevel so cutting forces are distributed over a larger area;
- B) Chisel – (also called “V” or Single-Bevel) sharpened on one side only;
- C) Double-Convex – (aka “Hawaiian”) looks like a chisel but is ground symmetrically, leaving the spine rounded instead of pointed.
- D) Sabre – ( aka “Sheepsfoot”) has a deep hollow grind with the edge running straight to tip;
- E) Scandinavian – primary bevel very thin and short or even non-existent, creating hair popping sharpness at expense of strength because more metal must be removed from blade’s center line.
The heel is the area of the blade behind the edge, where it curves down towards the handle or guard. This is usually protected by a “finger choil” (see also “choil”) which allows precise control over how much of the hand is in contact with the cutting surface; less than an inch (25mm) away from the heel is often considered to be safest for most knives.
Bolster is a piece of metal, usually nickel silver alloy or stainless steel (sometimes inlayed with mother-of-pearl and other metals), that reinforces the handle and provides balance to a knife. It may be attached at the end of a partial tang, running partway through it (called “integrated bolster”), only on the front side (in which case it’s called “plated bolster”), or even on both sides (where it would be considered ornamental). Bolsters may also serve as stops to prevent the user’s hand from sliding down onto blade edge when doing heavy work.
5. Handle/ Scales
The hande is the end of the knife that is not sharp. Handle scales are sections of material attached over or around metal handles to improve gripping power and/ or comfort depending on size and shape.
The handle/ scales can be made from wood, stone, ivory, animal horn, antler even plastic/ resin, or a combination of these materials. Some knives may have scales made from the same material as the knife’s blade in which case this is known as a full tang. In other cases, an artificial material such as Micarta can be used for handles with blades that feature a partial tang where the handle scales are attached to one side of the handle by use of rivets or screws and slots cut into it onto which the handle scale is firmly attached when they are assembled together to complete the knife with its blade. Sometimes Micarta scales with holes drilled through them can be found on folding knives allowing safe opening and closing with a thumb stud without being punched through during normal usage.
The tang is where the blade attaches to the hilt of a knife. Knife blades are usually made out of either carbon steel or stainless steel alloys that are heat treated for strength and sharpness. The word “tang” is believed to originate from the old English “range”, the meaning portion of an object projecting from its main body.
A full-tang design provides the greatest amount of strength to prevent breakage under stress whereas partial tang designs may fail if stressed excessively particularly when used for chopping wood etc. Most knives have a partial tang which runs beyond no more than three quarters down the handle’s length where it meets with a butt cap at one which acts as a counterweight and also as a pommel for hammering the knife to do wood chopping work such as splitting small logs. Butt caps can be removed to allow gutting of the game and other uses if required.
Also, the length of the tang will affects its strength and grip while using it. Usually, a longer tang will be more robust while a shorter one will feel lighter and better for precision work such as skinning small game or filleting fish. Also, it is possible to switch the knife’s grip around without much effort should you prefer other positions. To do this simply remove the handle scales from both sides making sure they’re not glued in place just by putting even pressure on them. Then slot them into each side of the handle exactly opposite to their previous position until they snap into place, do not over-tighten when doing this though as handles might break if gripped tight enough causing damage especially if wooden ones are used. This can be done to suit individual preferences and hand sizes as well.
7. Rivets/ Handle Fasteners
Rivets are pins that are often made from metal which is inserted into pre-drilled holes through the handle scales and then hammered flat on the other side to secure them. This works well for lighter duty knives but becomes less durable if it has a long tang as more stress may be placed upon this area, usually resulting in breakage. Sometimes if a knife has an extended tang between its handle scales it may have one or more attachment screws instead of rivets which may make for a more secure and durable construction. Once the rivets or screws have been released, the handle scales can be removed from the tang leaving it exposed ready to make a new grip with others should you wish to do this.
Rivets are flat pins which are hammered through pre-drilled holes in both the handle scales and blade tang then flattened over on their other side to secure them together once tightened up. This method works well for lighter duty knives but tends not to work so well if used on full tang knives where additional stress may be placed upon this area resulting in breakage especially if extensive sharpening has been done often over a long period of time. If a knife has an extended rigid or rat tail tang between its handle scales it may have one or more attachment screws instead of rivets. These can be removed to allow the handle scales to be slid off the tang leaving it exposed ready for a new grip to be made with others if you wish to do this.
The point is where the knife blade meets with the handle and point. The point of a knife blade is usually sharpened from its spine while a rounded portion called a ‘false edge’ may also be present on it which runs down to the main cutting edge’s side, this helps preserve it if brought into contact with hard surfaces or during prying work. Some knives have no point whatsoever such as some utility knives designed for specific purposes which makes them less effective in certain roles but more versatile overall should you ever require something other than general purpose functionality. Many hunters, skinners, and other outdoor professionals consider having a separate section of the blade that has been ground to have just enough strength to perform tasks without being brittle or easily broken yet still maintain a small sharp point. This part of the blade may also be serrated which makes for much safer and efficient cutting work when employed as a stabbing weapon if required because these types of cuts tend to be less lethal than those inflicted by using its main straight or curved edge instead.
9. Tip/ Belly
The part of the blade where it meets with the handle is called the tip. Knives with their tips sharpened on their main cutting edge are said to have a ‘sharp’ point meanwhile those which do not at all like some utility knives normally do, may be referred to as having a ’rounded’ or ‘false’ point instead which runs down to the main cutting edge’s side in order to prevent it from becoming chipped when used against hard surfaces or when performing prying work. Some knives lack points completely like many utility types which makes them less suited for certain roles but better overall if you ever require something other than general purpose functionality. Many hunters, skinners and outdoor professionals prefer using several different types of blades that have points such as these which tend to be the safest and most efficient when employed as stabbing weapons because cutting injuries tend to be less fatal than those inflicted by using their main straight or curved edge instead.
The portion of the blade opposite to the cutting edge; also called “back”, “heel” or simply “spine”. It is usually rounded off on smaller knives with less metal behind the edge exit point (also called “shoulder”).
Most full tang knives have two sections to their blades, tang and shoulder (above). The shoulder is the top part of the blade that meets the handle. Often, this section joins with other pieces to create a bolstered/ integrated “guard” between the blade edge and the user’s hand. A partial or rat-tail tang extends only partially into the hilt where it slopes into a spade (round) or flat tip (or “bolo”) shape. In fine custom knives, this design may be decorated with file work on either spine or belly as an aesthetic accent.
The sharpened surface of a blade from its point towards its edge; also called “back” or “heel”. This is the edge opposite to the sharpened side, and one of its main functions is to strengthen the blade because there is considerably more metal behind it than at the cutting edge.
Knife makers often must choose between tapering or thickening the point, and both choices have their advantages and disadvantages:
1) Tapering – Provides a better penetration because less material will be cut away when stabbing but increases the risk of breakage if slammed against a hard surface such as bone;
2) Thickening – Increases strength for heavy duty activities such as chopping wood but decreases penetration capability.
The butt forms the very end of a knife’s handle and it is usually thicker than the rest of it as well. The pommel which often has a lanyard hole added to it, can be located here and can provide a more secure grip on knives with rounded handles that lack a protrusion where you may normally place your index finger otherwise. It is also used as a striking weapon if required although this will damage most blades so you should consider carrying something better suited for such purposes instead such as small hand-axes or tomahawks instead. Some individuals may find an extended tang extending from the tip of their knife’s blade down to its butt useful for breaking windows quickly, driving nails into wood and other tasks besides simply affixing the knife’s handle scales or grip panels to its frame.
A lanyard hole may also be present in the butt of the knife if it has one which is designed for you to attach a short piece of cordage to so that it can slide over your wrist more easily should you ever lose your knife while working in hazardous terrain or conditions where dropping it might result in someone tripping over it or running into an obstacle with it causing injuries, this tactic is especially useful when used against moving vehicles by placing them between seat cushions and surfaces inside them to keep occupants safe from harm should collisions occur. It may also double as a glass breaker either directly or by using other tactical methods should you need to through windows quickly.
12. Thumb Holes
A thumb hole is a semicircular cut out at the base of the handle or other location where you would normally place your index finger to provide more control over it. This may be either contoured into the blade’s spine, handle or both in order to make gripping it easier depending on which kind of grip method it employs since each has its own advantages and disadvantages which should always be considered when choosing what type of knife to use for certain tasks. Some are also large enough so that you can insert your entire thumb inside them instead for even better control over the blade during critical moments if required although this does not work well with all types of knives. Knives with their spines contoured so that they are convex down towards the blade’s edge which is most common may also be employed as an improvised thumb rest if you need to provide more stability than you normally would for certain tasks although it does prevent the knife from being used in a similar fashion too since this reduces its effectiveness somewhat by removing your ability to direct force against what you’re cutting with it.
The pommel provides weight and balance to the knife, usually stops forward movement when resting on a surface such as when chopping things such as hardwood logs for firewood, also provides extra force when pounding through thin items such as tent stakes etc. The pommel’s main function is to provide balance and weight, though it also plays a role in blade control and stopping forward motion of the knife when resting on a flat surface as well as providing extra striking force as a tenderizer or leather smasher using the butt end of the handle. In some knives used for more heavy duty tough jobs such as chopping, splitting, hacking etc., there may be an indentation where the tang fits into the handle called jimping to provide a better grip for fingers or thumbs.
Kitchen Essentials: Basic Types Of Kitchen Knives
1. Chef’s Knife
The most commonly used type of kitchen knife in Western cultures is the chef’s knife, or French knife (from its popular use with French chefs). This is a general purpose blade that has a broad, curved belly which tapers sharply to meet a moderately sharpened edge leading up to a tip at the opposite end. The blade can be used to chop, slice or cut anything that does not require intricate detail.
What Is A Chef Knife Used For?
The chef’s knife can be used as a general purpose cutting and chopping tool as well as for dicing, mincing and slicing fruits and vegetables. It is also often referred to as a cook’s knife or French knife. A 10-inch (25 cm) blade is typical, but 8-inch (20 cm), 9-inch (23 cm) and even 12-inch (30 cm) sizes also exist. The larger the blade, the heavier it will feel in your hand. Larger blades are better suited to those with larger hands and those who do a lot of heavy duty chopping; whereas smaller blades may be more useful for people with small hands, delicate work such as removing bones from fillets or very careful cutting.
2. Paring Knife
A paring knife is a small, general purpose kitchen knife used for all-around cutting tasks that are too small to be done with the chef’s knife, but too large to be done with a pairing knife. The paring knife’s blade is short and straight with a pointed tip, making it ideal for peeling, shaping and creating garnishes. The narrow blade also allows you to make very fine cuts. A 3 ¼ -inch (8 cm) blade is typical, but 2-inch (5 cm), 4-inch (10 cm) and even 5 ½ -inch (14 cm) blades are available too.
What Is A Paring Knife Used For?
Paring knives are usually best used for more detailed cutting tasks where precision is required such as removing the eyes from potatoes or hulling strawberries. They are often used interchangeably with boning knives because they can be employed in similar ways. However, their small size makes them unsuitable for chopping food items into small pieces.
3. Utility Knife
The utility knife is a general purpose knife with a blade that is much shorter than a chef’s knife and usually not as wide. As such, these knives can be used for a wider range of tasks where greater control is required.
The utility blade is perhaps the most versatile of all kitchen knives. It has a straighter edge like that on the slicer but the tip slopes downwards toward the heel in a similar fashion to a chef’s. This combination makes it suitable for a variety of cutting tasks. A 4-inch (10 cm) blade is typically used, but 3 ¼ -inch (8 cm) and 5 ½ -inch (14 cm) blades are also available.
What Is A Utility Knife Used For?
A utility knife is best employed when you need to make several cuts in quick succession of more or less the same size – which might otherwise be difficult with larger knives such as chef’s knives. It requires very little effort to use, making it ideal if you have weak hands or suffer from arthritis.
4. Bread Knife
The bread knife is perhaps the least versatile type of all knives due to its unique shape. Its blade has a scalloped edge that comprises 30 or so triangular holes which are ideal for cutting through the crusts of loaves without damaging their soft insides. Bread knives have an 8-inch (20 cm) blade and as such, they should only be used on bread, not as a replacement for a chef’s knife.
What Is A Bread Knife Used For?
Bread knives are typically used to cut bagels too – this being one good reason why you might want to have one around. It will ensure that your bagel comes out intact every time rather than being crushed first by a chef’s knife before it can even be sliced!
A bread knife makes it easy to slice bread into thin portions since you are able to cut it straight down without the knife slipping. This is not possible with other knives, particularly those with curved blades.
The Best Knives For Preparing Meat
1. Boning Knife
A boning knife is an almost fully flexible small (3” – 6” blade), narrow bladed knife with a sharp but sometimes only semi-sharp tip which allows it to move easily in a forward and backward motion in order to separate the flesh from bones when butchering meat. Along with a paring knife, this type of kitchen knife is the second most commonly used in Western cultures after chef’s knives.
A boning knife has a thinner blade than the chef’s knife, though it is still strong enough to cut through small bones. The thinness of the blade makes it better for tasks such as separating raw meat from the bone or filleting. The curved tip allows it to get in close to the bone without hitting it. The belly of a boning knife is deep and curves up very gradually from the edge until it meets with a sharp tip at around two thirds down from the handle. This creates a well that can be used for scraping delicate cuts away from hard surfaces such as cartilage and tendons.
The difference between this type of knife and the slicer is that its tip does not slope downwards toward the heel – instead it has an upward curve. This makes it ideal for separating meat from bones although it can be employed in all similar cutting tasks. Boning knives are typically 6-inches (15 cm) or 8-inches ( cm), although 10-inch (25 cm) and even 12-inch (30 cm) blades do exist.
What Is A Boning Knife Used For?
A boning knife is often the best choice for cutting raw meat because it will not crush or mangle it as a chef’s knife might; however, you can use any type of knife for this purpose. Boning knives are also particularly useful when preparing roasts such as turkey and chicken which require more detailed cuts than would be possible with a carving knife (see below).
2. Cleaver Or Butcher Knife
A cleaver is the ultimate in chopping power. The blade is wide, thick and heavy which gives it tremendous cutting power yet its weight also makes it very good for pounding ingredients (similar to what you would do with a mortar & pestle). The distinctive flat face of the blade can be used like an extra surface when mincing or slicing too.
A cleaver needs to be large because it needs to deliver powerful blows that would otherwise split the blade if it were smaller; however, this does not mean that all the cleavers you see are large! Some are only about 5 inches (12 cm) long so they can easily fit in your hand.
Because of its weight and shape, a cleaver requires less effort than other knives when chopping food which is why some people with weak hands prefer to use it. This makes it ideal for cutting frozen foods too since the additional power required to cut through them will seem minimal by comparison.
What Is A Cleaver Used For?
Cleavers are best suited to bone-in cuts of meat, particularly poultry and pork since these cuts will require quite some force behind them in order to cut through the bones. However, they are just as effective when used on large fruit that needs splitting into segments such as pineapple or melons etc. Cleavers cannot cope with chopping vegetables however; this requires a different kind of knife instead.
3. Carving Knife
Carving knives are sometimes called slicers or carving knives which is an indication of their versatility really. The long blade enables you to slice through even larger cuts of food quite easily yet it is narrow enough to enable slicing smaller pieces too.
The carving knife has a long narrow blade that tapers sharply towards its pointed tip which makes it ideal for cutting thin slices of meat off large joints or roasts. The blade can be up to 15-inches (38 cm) in length and 8mm thick at its widest point. A typical carving knife will have little or no curve on its edge too but this does depend on the style of the knife.
What Is A Carving Knife Used For?
Carving knives are designed for cutting large joints and roasts into thin slices, not chopping vegetables or fruit. If that’s what you want then choose a different type of knife instead! Carving knives enable you to make smaller cuts than would be possible using other types of knives; however, there is much more skill required when using this kind of knife to ensure you cut the meat at the right angle.
The Best Knives For Fish
1. Santoku Knives
The Santoku knife is a Japanese-style multipurpose knife which usually has a rounded blade similar to that of a cleaver and this is designed so you can rock the blade when chopping food with it. The handle is made from wood or polypropylene and there are no rivets in the handle either; instead, the blade and handle fit into each other.
Santoku knives typically have around a 15-degree angle on their edges which means they won’t slice through bread like a bread knife does; however, they can still be used for cutting bread.
The design of a Santoku knife is such that it should not require as much force to use as other knives and this makes them ideal for people with weak hands or wrists too. This also means you won’t tire your hands as quickly when chopping food which is useful if you do a lot of cooking!
What Is A Santoku Knife Used For?
Santoku knives have become very popular in recent years it seems although they were originally designed for slicing fish. These days, however, they are also commonly used for cutting vegetables, carving meat and even making sushi rolls! Also, a Santoku knife is designed for slicing and chopping vegetables and meat with ease; however, it also has a pointed tip which makes it ideal for adding garnishes to dishes.
2. Salmon Knife
A salmon knife looks similar to a bread knife only it has a long, narrow blade which is very flexible. The blades are usually made from high-quality hardened steel and the handles are also fixed onto them with rivets.
Salmon knives are actually very versatile, ideal for cutting many different types of food in fact! Although they’re called salmon knives, they can be used on any type of fish. If you want something more precise then choose a filleting knife instead but if you’re looking for an all-purpose knife to use on different types of food then choose your favorite color of the salmon knife!
What Is A Salmon Knife Used For?
The main purpose of a salmon knife is to make sure it can cut through raw or cooked fish without damaging it in any way. This is because when you use an ordinary bread knife on fish, the latter will become crushed and crumpled. With a salmon knife, this won’t happen since each slice will be thin with very little effort being required on your part.
The Salmon knives are also great for cutting cakes and pastry; however, their main purpose is to make sure they’re not used for anything other than cutting fish!
3. Filleting Knife
A fillet knife has a long, thin blade which means you can easily glide it through the body of a fish so you don’t leave any rough edges behind. You should never use one if your recipe calls for a salmon knife because it will simply ruin the taste of your fish.
When buying a fillet knife, make sure you choose one which has stainless steel blades since this type is resistant to corrosion. Since these knives usually have wooden or plastic handles, there are no rivets either; instead, they’re glued onto the blade. When buying, check that the handle is firmly attached to the blade before buying one!
What Are Filleting Knives Used For?
A fillet knife is mostly used for cutting through raw fish without damaging its look or taste in any way. However, you can also use it for carving meat and even slicing, cutting vegetables too if you want to!
1. Peeling Knife
A vegetable knife is a small, rounded blade which looks similar to a mini cleaver and this is designed so you can rock the blade when chopping food with it.
The handle of a vegetable knife is made from wood or plastic but it’s also very short too; however, there are no rivets in the handle either as there are on most other knives. Instead, the blade and handle fit into each other.
What Is A Peeling Knife Used For?
You can use a vegetable knife for cutting different types of vegetables, particularly those which need precision cuts such as cucumbers or potatoes. This means they are great for making potato chips, French fries and dicing vegetables too!
2. Nakiri Knives
A Nakiri knife is very similar to a vegetable knife only it has a Japanese-style design and the blade goes all the way up to the handle. There are no rivets in either; instead, both parts of the knife fit into each other.
Although a Nakiri knife looks similar to a Santoku knife , the latter has a straight blade while the former has a curved one. In fact, there’s no point of difference between Nakiri knives and Western-style knives since they have been designed from the same materials!
However, some people prefer to use Nakiri knives because they don’t have any of those little indentations on the blades which cause food particles to stick inside them. This means you can chop all sorts of vegetables without having bits stuck inside your blade!
What Is A Nakiri Knife Used For?
The main purpose of using a Nakiri knife is to make sure you can cut vegetables without crushing them too much and this makes them perfect for chopping or dicing almost anything. They also great for slicing small fish such as sardines since their flat shape really allows you to lay them down on top of your food while cutting it!
3. Tomato Knives
Tomato knives are very small with a pointed, almost needle-shaped blade and there is just one serrated edge too. You will also notice that they have very short handles which makes them perfect for slicing into soft foods such as tomatoes!
What Are Tomato Knives Used For?
It doesn’t matter if you want to chop up an orange or cut through the skin of a deliciously ripe peach, a Tomato knife will manage both these jobs thanks to its sharp, narrow blade. Some people even prefer using Tomato knives when carving meat because you can avoid sticking a fork into the meat while you try to transfer the slices onto your plate!
You can even use a tomato knife to carve cakes and pastry too since its very flat and you will find it is great for cutting sandwiches in half without squashing them!
Different Knife Edge Types
1. Hollow Ground Edge
A hollow ground edge is a sharp edge which has been created by grinding away the metal from both sides of the blade and it’s better if you choose one with a small bevel angle.
When choosing, make sure the blade appears to have two sharp edges and it doesn’t look like there’s any point in its center; however, it might take you a few minutes to check because these knives don’t usually come with an engraved blade!
Hollow ground blades are mainly used as kitchen knives since they offer such high levels of control just like Western-style ones. This means they excel at chopping or slicing raw meats and vegetables too, so this is why they originally became popular.
You will also notice that hollow ground edges are lighter than others so it’s easier for you to use them in a rocking motion while cutting your food and this makes them perfect for mincing herbs or garlic too.
2. Serrated Edge
If you have a serrated edge, then you will have noticed that the blade has one single sharp edge and this is because it’s been created by cutting into the blade or ‘scoring’ it.
You might also notice that there are little teeth on its surface and this is what gives these knives their name! Their blades usually measure between 5mm-20mm and they’re ideal for people who enjoy using curved blades; however, they can be very difficult to sharpen too.
A serrated edge makes your knife great for cutting through foods like soft fruit and bread since it grips onto them easily and this means you won’t struggle to cut them without squashing or damaging them either. These edges are also perfect if you want to cut tomatoes or other soft foods without tearing them apart either.
Serrated knives are great for slicing through warm, semi-soft bread too since it grips onto the tiny crannies and allows you to slice it with ease!
3. Scalloped Edge
Scalloped edges are similar to serrated ones since they’re sharp edges with lots of little teeth on their surface too. However, you might notice that they have points in the center of these teeth while others just have continuous sharp sides!
This means that scalloped edges are often more inclined to cut into your food than other blades which is why they work well for slicing through soft foods without squashing them. They’re also perfect for cutting small fish fillets and vegetables too although it can be difficult to sharpen them if you know what you’re doing.
The scalloped edge is pretty similar to the serrated one except that its tiny points in the center mean it’s a bit more inclined towards a sawing motion when you cut. This means it can slice through bread and other hard foods too with ease!
When buying, make sure you check for small curves on each side of each tooth which will be there if this is a good quality blade.
4. Straight Edge
A straight edged knife has no teeth or curved sections at all and although they look incredibly dull, they’re actually brilliant for preparing ingredients since they offer such high levels of control which means you won’t end up cutting yourself by accident either! If you have a choice between a straight edged one and an unserrated blade, then choose the latter since they offer more control over your foods than their straighter friends.
Straight edges are perfect for slicing through foods without squashing them too while you can also use them to cut semi-hard bread or fillet small fish with ease. They’re not great for mincing herbs though so if this is what you need, then consider choosing a serrated edge instead!
When buying, make sure there aren’t any curves on either side of the knife’s edge otherwise it may not be that sharp; however, it will tend to get sharper over time since these knives don’t usually come very sharp.
What’s The Best Knife Blade Material?
It’s clear that your knife choice will be one of the most important decisions you make when buying new kitchen utensils since, after all, it’s what you’ll end up using to prepare your food. Choosing the right one can often come down to how much money you want to spend on them too so remember that better quality knives usually last longer but they do also tend to cost more!
1. Ceramic Blades
The Ceramic blades are a relatively new addition to the knife market and while they’re incredibly sharp, they also tend to be increasingly brittle too. This means you have to be really careful when using them since any tiny impact can damage the blade so if you drop it for example, then there’s a high chance it won’t work anymore!
However, the Ceramic blades stay sharper than all of the others too; in fact they stay sharp for 6-12 months with ease which is around twice as long as most other types!
The Ceramic blades are often made from zirconium oxide which is incredibly tough and this gives them their incredible strength. The Ceramic blades also don’t corrode at all either; in fact they don’t even rust which means you can put them in the dishwasher without worrying about any damage to them.
Ceramic blades are great for mincing and cutting herbs since they’re incredibly sharp and because they stay sharp for so long, you won’t need to sharpen them either!
An added benefit is that ceramic blades don’t transfer heat well; in fact it takes around five minutes before they start feeling warm when handling them. This means if you like using hot knives for removing pizza toppings or slicing into a piping-hot loaf of bread then this type of knife is ideal! Just remember not to drop your ceramic blade though since it will shatter easily!
2. Stainless Steel Blades
The stainless steel blades are the most common types on today’s market and while they’re incredibly tough, they tend to blunt quickly which means you will need to regularly sharpen them.
However, the stainless steel knives are incredibly hard so it takes around 30 minutes with specialist equipment before they’ll become sharp again. This doesn’t tend to be too much of a problem though since the Stainless steel blades also retain their edge for quite some time; in fact they can keep their sharpness for around 12 months at least!
They come in all shapes and sizes too but what you should look out for is ones that have partial serrations or scalloped edges since this will help you slice through foods easier (and more safely) than a straight edge would.
You can also get stainless steel blades that are non-stick coated too; the Stainless steel tend to be just as hard but stay sharper for longer since they have a ceramic coating over them which will increase the blade’s durability massively.
Stainless steel blades are ideal for cutting bread, filleting fish and mincing herbs with ease since they keep their sharpness for so long too!
An added bonus is that you can clean the Stainless steel knives without worry though do remember not to leave them in the cutlery basket or they might discolor!
3. Damascus Steel Blades
The damascus steel blades are made from two or more types of metal that have been folded into one another and forged into a single blade. This process increases the strength of the blade exponentially since it causes the individual metals to bond together at a molecular level, improving overall durability by up to 300 percent!
In short, the Damascus steel blades will never break no matter how many times you drop them which means they’re ideal for cutting meat and filleting fish with too. What makes Damascus steel knives really special though is their incredibly high quality sharpness; in fact some say that they can keep their razor-sharp edge even longer than ceramic ones!
What’s great about the Damascus steel blades is that if they do get damaged then can take them to a specialist and they’ll use a high-tech laser machine to repair the blade which means it will be as good as new in minutes!
Unfortunately, Damascus steel blades are prone to rusting quickly since they contain water; however if you oil them occasionally then this shouldn’t pose too many problems.
Most chefs wouldn’t use any other knives on their restaurants either since the damascus steel blades boost your safety while cutting meat and filleting fish with ease, making them one of the best types on today’s market!
4. Carbon Steel Blades
The carbon steel blades contain around 0.5% carbon along with 10%-14% chromium and means they’re incredibly hard which means they’re very sharp too.
However, carbon steel blades are also brittle so if you drop them on a hard surface then their blade will likely shatter into pieces easily; in fact it’s recommended you only use these knives with chopping boards since any impact can damage them.
The carbon steel blades do stay sharper for longer than stainless steel blades though and while they don’t corrode at all, the carbon steel blades tend to rust quickly which means you need to regularly sand away the rust or oil it lightly. This can be quite annoying for some people but what makes this type of knife great is that they get incredibly sharp; in fact some say that carbon steel blades can be even sharper than ceramic ones!
Carbon steel blades are ideal for cutting meat, filleting fish and mincing herbs since they keep their sharpness so long.
The carbon steel blades are not dishwasher safe though since the carbon content rusts them quickly if they come into contact with water too often which means you’ll need to clean them by hand. However, the carbon steel blades will last a lifetime without any issues!
Fixed Blade Vs. Folding Knives
One of the biggest decisions you’ll need to make when buying knives is whether you prefer fixed blade or folding ones since both come with their own unique advantages.
Folding blades are much more compact which means they’re ideal for storing in your kitchen drawer since you can fit a lot more into them! They also have a lock so if you press down on the back of them then this will prevent them from closing while chopping which is great for safety too.
Unfortunately, there are a few downsides to these knives too and one of these is that they aren’t as durable as fixed blade knives since the metal handle isn’t solid all the way through. This means that if it bends just slightly then the knife could slip while you’re chopping which could cause injury.
Fixed blade knives are much stronger though so if you regularly cut tough meats then these blades will never bend! They also have a solid handle which means they don’t have any weak spots either; in fact some fixed blade knives can be incredibly long like sword knives since they use the entire length of the blade for cutting, making them perfect for carving large joints or pieces of meat.
However, fixed blades aren’t as compact as folding ones and finding space to store one in your kitchen drawers will not be easy especially if you want to fit more than two in at once plus because there is no lock on fixed blades, this makes using them slightly dangerous since they can close on your hand if you cut too quickly.
Features To Look For When Buying A Knife?
When you’re buying knives, there are several features to look out for since some are better suited to certain tasks than others.
For example, the size of the blade (or tooths) will affect its overall effectiveness when cutting meat and filleting fish which is why it’s important to find one that comes with at least five or six blades per inch; in fact, most professional chefs would recommend about nine teeth per inch for best results.
This means that if your knife only has four teeth per inch then this may not be as effective when cutting meats which can be incredibly frustrating especially when preparing food in bulk like when cooking for a big family gathering! A good tip here is to look for knives with serrated edges since they’ll be perfect for slicing meats with ease.
Another important factor to look out for is the handle since this will directly affect how easy it is to grip your knife which can often make a big difference when preparing meals quickly. Chefs would recommend wooden handles since these are usually sleek and ergonomically designed but if you don’t like wood then you should opt for one that has silicone on it instead since this will give you extra grip too!
When cutting meat or filleting fish with a knife, the best way is to use short movements rather than long slow ones so be sure to choose one with an overall length of between eight and ten inches; any longer than this and they won’t require too much effort when chopping through meats plus you’ll be more at risk of injury.
In terms of storage, some knives have a hanging loop attached to the top so they can easily be placed on hooks in your kitchen while others come with a sheath that you can slide them into when not in use. Neither option is better than the other and both will depend on your own personal preference but it’s important to remember that any type of knife needs to be stored safely especially if they have blades since these are very sharp.
Overall, when buying knives it’s important to remember that the more blades they have per inch and the shorter their overall length is then this will make them perfect for faster chopping which means you can get on with preparing your meal much faster. However, don’t forget to look out for features like wooden handles or ones with serrated edges since these are better suited for cutting meats.
Finally, be sure to buy your knife from a well-known seller too since if you go down the cheap route then there’s no guarantee that they won’t slip while using them which could lead to injury! For example, injuries caused by knives in kitchens have increased dramatically over the past decade so choose carefully.
A knife is a personal item that you use every day, so it’s important to know what each part of the blade does. The edge is an area on a knife where metal meets plastic or wood and can be sharpened for cutting food. It’s also called the “cutting surface” because this is where most of your chopping will happen. When you sharpen your knives, make sure not to cut yourself by using protective gloves and eye protection!
Making sure you know how to use a knife properly is important for safety and efficiency in the kitchen. Here are some helpful tips on using knives correctly, as well as information about different types of knives that can be used when cooking. Happy chopping!