All About: A Chef’s Knife

Today is the first post in our All About series.  Every week we will write about the features and usages on a knife or tool.  This will help educate you on culinary products!

Chef’s Knife

Also known as: Cook’s Knife, French Knife

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Features

A chef’s knife can range in length anywhere from 4-14″.  The wide-bladed knife has a spine (the top of the knife) that gradually narrows (or tapers) to the cutting edge and creates a pointed tip.  This knife also has a bolster, the large rounded piece of metal, in front of the handle that gradually gets narrower towards the back tip of the cutting edge.  Because of this geometry, this is the one knife that should be well balanced with the weight distributed equally between the handle and the blade.

Usage

This is the most versatile knife in the kitchen and thus the most used blade style by professional chefs.  The blade is shaped so that it can peel, trim, slice, dice, chop, mince, vegetables, fillet fish, and cut meat.  Each part of the knife is designed to perform a different task.  The tip is used for fine work such as paring, coring, trimming and peeling.  The middle cutting edge is used for slicing, dicing, chopping and other precision cuts.  The back end of the cutting edge is needed when a task requires force and the wedge shape to split dense material.  The spine can be used to crack shells and the flat side of the blade can crush garlic. It is the flagship of cutlery.

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4 Responses to “All About: A Chef’s Knife”

  1. JamesD Says:

    Thanks for the useful info. It’s so interesting

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  2. Sami J Says:

    what is the purpose of the “dimples” in the blade?

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  3. Kirsten Dressler Says:

    I am glad you enjoyed it! Look for more blog posts to come.

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  4. Kirsten Dressler Says:

    Thanks for the question! Dimples, also known as kullenschliffs, kullens, hollows and grantons, are used to create air pockets between the food that you are cutting and the blade of the knife. This makes it so that the food doesn’t stick to the blade.

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