In the article below the author speaks about “forged knives” I have indicated elsewhere the difference between forged and stamped knives. In today’s technology the major differences have more to do with the amount of stainless and other additions to the steel itself and less to do with the process. The bottom line is that you are looking for a knife that does the cutting job that you want and one that will hold an edge without needing a sharpening every 5 minutes. JA Henkels makes both kinds of knives and both will hold an edge for a long time but you have to be willing to pay the extra bucks one of these beauties will cost you.
Forged Knives, The Tools For The Professional Cook And The Enthusiastic Home Cook
A forged knife is durable tool made for a lifetime use by the serious cook. The blade is precision-forged from one solid piece of steel and perfectly balanced. The edge is skilfully honed by hand and therefore incredibly sharp and easy maintainable.
Cutting different types of food requires different types of knives.
There is no one universal knife that can be used for the multitude of cutting tasks.
The enjoyment of gourmet food begins with the preparation and the right tool.
In order to cut small vegetables and fruit a small blade is to be favoured; for slicing bread, ripe tomatoes or a crispy roast, a knife with a wavy or serrated edge is the right tool.a long and straight edge is ideal for carving; and the Cooks knife, the most important tool in a kitchen is ideal for all food preparations including mincing, dicing and slicing. It is the manual food processor.
There is a specific blade for a specific purpose:
- The blade with the straight edge. The straight edge allows a smooth and clean cut. When carving no fibres are torn out of the meat. This edge can be used for firm and soft food like meat, vegetables and fruit.
- The blade with the serrated edge. The wavy or serrated edge allows an easy cut through crusty food like a traditional roast and crispy bread.
- The blade with the hollow edge. When cutting an air pocket is created between the hollow edge and the slice. This prevents the food from sticking to the blade and allows for finer slices.
The Sharpening Steel
With regular use, any knifes edge will lose its “bite”. Use a sharpening steel to realign the edge and to keep it sharp. This will insure a lifetime of cooking pleasures.
The Diamond Sharpening Steel But also dull knives can easily be sharpened by using a sharpening steel which is coated with industrial diamonds.
Honing / Sharpening Technique Hold the steel with your left and the knife with your right hand (lefties simply do the opposite) and guide the blade with light pressure across the steel. Do this in an arching motion at a 20 degree angle side-to-side. Repeat this process 6 – 8 times. With practice, you will find this becomes an easy motion. Never stroke each side more than once in succession. Thats all. Now your knife should be as sharp as the first time you used it. By the way, please use a steel which is longer than the knife you hone.
With the proper care, one can contribute to the long life of a knife, and it is not difficult. The construction technique and the materials used to manufacture the forged knives ensure that they are dishwasher safe. If you value your tools we recommend that, after each use, you wash your knives with warm water and a little detergent, rinse carefully and dry with a towel. Corrosive food particles will not affect your blade if washed off directly after use.
For proper storage we recommend the following options:
- Knife blocks in a variety of shapes, colors and configurations. The handy knife block provides protection for your blades as well as a visual compliment to your kitchen decor.
- Magnet Bars in wood, synthetic material or aluminium. Two extra strong magnet segments provide a safe, easily visible and space saving storage option. Mounting materials are included with each magnet bar.
- Cooks cases in rolls and briefcase styles. This is the ideal method for professionals to store and transport their tools safely.
How to choose a knife
Depending on the possibilities and the range of models available, you will choose one or more criteria among the ones below.
Choosing by weight:
Between 2 knifes of the same size and for the same use, go for the heavier one. This will probably mean a forged knife with a fairly thick blade.
Choosing according to your habits:
Everything goes in the dishwasher or not?
If you are used to putting everything into the dishwasher after use, check for the manufacturer’s ‘dishwasher safe’ label and avoid wooden handles.
If you think you are patient enough to rinse and dry your knife after each use then let yourself be guided by other criteria.
Choosing according to important details:
The cutting edge
Check that both sides of the blade have been sharpened.
Go for ‘straight’ edges rather than serrated ones, except for special knives (bread, tomato or steak).
Check that there is no looseness or space where the blade joins the handle.
Food remnants could build up there and ferment.
Choosing according to look:
If you are still not sure, give preference to a knife that appealed to you straight away. After all, your intuition is a sense that is just as good as sight or touch.
Choosing according to price:
The most expensive is not always the best, but the cheapest is often the worst choice.
Choosing according to brand:
At http://www.Chefknivestogo.com you will find the A-brands of Forged high Quality Knives.
Wusthof, Sabatier, Zwilling (by Henckels) and KAI.
By: Ron Toma
Article Directory: http://www.articledashboard.com