Knives have come a long way, not just in terms of the material used. Their varying shapes and sizes also affect their uses. In the past, knives have been made of bone, stone, and flint. But now, we use titanium, iron, steel and even ceramic.
Have you ever purchased a knife set but not know what each knife is used for? Below, we’ll clarify the uses of some common kitchen knives.
1. Chef knife
The most basic and versatile of all is the chef knife. Characterised by a long, broad blade with a straight edge, it is the perfect tool for chopping and dicing vegetables. The curved blade allows it to rock back and forth on a chopping board, while the broad heel area lets it withstand higher chopping pressure, especially when it comes to thick or hard foods like potatoes.
Like a smaller version of the chef knife, the utility knife allows for more intricate work. It comes in handy for chopping smaller foods and vegetables. If you think the chef knife is too big for the foods you need to chop, what you are looking for is a utility knife.
The santoku knife is one of the popular kitchen knives in Japan. Similar to the chef or utility knife, it is highly versatile. The straight blade is good for cutting fish, chopping fruits and vegetables and slicing and mincing meats.
Contrary to its name, a boning knife is not for breaking bones. Its slim but strong blade is constructed for trimming the meat around the bone and for cutting through cartilage. It is designed to be light and easy to manoeuvre.
The paring knife may be short and slim, but it is ideal in cutting, chopping or slicing fruits and vegetables. It is strong enough for cutting hard foods like potatoes into smaller pieces, and manoeuvrable enough for peeling, trimming, and removing seeds.
Self-explanatory as it is, bread knife is, well, for slicing breads. The beauty of this long serrated blade is how it cuts through soft bread without making it out of shape. Unlike most of the other knives, you have to use it like a saw. It can also be used to slice cakes and tomatoes, cut large melons, or break chocolate bars.
Also called the butcher knife, the cleaver is characterised by its flat and rectangular blade. One of the broadest and heaviest knives, it is a heavy-duty tool for chopping raw meat. It can even cut through bone!
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