So, do you want to learn and remember the 3 best tips for maintaining a kitchen knife?
Dealing with dull knives can be a pain, sometimes we rather buy a new knife than deal with the old one. Often times it’s not the knife that’s the problem, its that you haven't properly learned how to care for a kitchen knife.
Maintaining a kitchen knife is not that difficult, really. You can trust me on that. But, if you don’t know the basics - sharpening, cleaning, and knowing when the knife is dull, you won’t be able to fully utilize and care for your knife.
Some of the trades I’ll be sharing with you are not that “top secret”. In fact, you may have come across these tips at one point or another in your life.
3 Best Tips for Maintaining a Kitchen Knife
Here are the 3 best tips in maintaining a kitchen knife...
Tip #1: Sharpen the Kitchen Knife Using a Whetstone.
Whetstone is a tried and true ancient method of sharpening and it is still the best.
1. Wet the whetstone.
- Pour a glass of water into the whetstone before using it.
- Some are not designed to be soaked in water, so always refer to its user’s manual.
2. Start sharpening the knife by the whetstone’s rough side.
- If your knife is extremely dull, hold it at a 20-degree angle opposite of the whetstone’s rough side.
- Let the full length of the blade slide-brush it into the whetstone’s rough side.
- Now, here’s what you must be conscious about - the pressure you put on the knife.
- Apply controlled pressure (not too much as it could chip-off the blade) on the knife. This will truly make a difference in your process of maintaining a kitchen knife.
- Do this on the other side of the blade.
3. Sharpen the knife by the whetstone’s soft/fine side.
- Lay the knife’s blade on their soft/ fine-grind-side of the whetstone.
- Do the same process.
4. In case the friction dries the surface, sprinkle water.
- Hold the knife in place. Keep steady.
- Sprinkle drops of water into the whetstone side-surface until the brushing smooths.
Here are some other options for sharpening your knives:
- Hone Rods (click here to learn how to do it)
- Knife-sharpening steel (click here to learn how to do it)
- V-Notch Sharpeners (click here to learn how to do it)
- Electric knife sharpeners (click here to learn how to do it)
Tip #2: Clean the Kitchen Knife.
Here are the steps/instructions on how to clean the kitchen knife.
- Wash and clean its blade by hand.
- Prepare soap (dishwasher soap), water, and sponge.
- Wash the knife with water.
- Pour soap into the sponge.
- Hold the knife with your other hand away from you. Position the tip away from you.
- Brush both sides of the knife.
- Avoid brushing the blade so that you don’t cut yourself.
- Wash the knife the second time.
- Keep the knife dry.
- Store it properly in a dry place.
Tip #3: Know when the Kitchen Knife is Dull.
Here are the steps/ instructions on how to know when the kitchen knife is dull. Among the 3 best tips for maintaining a kitchen knife, this one is most basic.
- Test the kitchen knife using the following tests:
- Use smooth-sided and rounded objects like onion, tomatoes, vegan foods, etc. ( Find produce like this from our farm box)
- If you choose an onion, keep its smooth skin intact.
- Lay the knife’s blade on the onion’s side.
- Try slicing, but don’t put in too much pressure.
- If the blade catches a break on the side, maintains the shape of the onion despite continuous slices, and keeps slick shapes on the sliced parts, then it’s sharp.
- If it breaks the onion’s shape instead of slices it, then it shouldn’t be sharp.
- Use paper.
- Lay the blade of the knife squared on the edge of the paper.
- Begin slicing at an angle.
- If the knife cuts and slides into the paper, then it should be sharp. If it does the opposite, then it isn’t.
Those are the best 3 best tips for maintaining a kitchen knife. And, as I’ve said, they’re not really that daunting. All they need is some focus and a couple of minutes!
Kitchen knives are among the most abused tools in your home. They deserve every single bit of effort and care. In turn, you’ll be able to speed up your cutting process so you can start cooking your favorite recipes!