Knife Skills 101
Stay sharp with this step-by-step guide.
Here’s how to keep your blades sharp.
- Wash by Hand. Dishwashers are harsh on blades: Knives can hit other items or corrode from food or water. Wash them in warm soapy water, then dry and store.
- No Scraping! After chopping, avoid scraping the blade across the cutting board to move ingredients. Use the blunt side of the knife instead.
- Sharpen Regularly. Look for knife-sharpening services at specialty grocery or kitchenware stores. Dull knives do a sloppy job — and they’re dangerous, too.
Tackle any kitchen task with these three basic blades.
- Chef's: This all-purpose knife (8- to 10-inch blade) is your go-to for most prep work. It can handle small jobs, like mincing garlic, or big ones, like breaking down squash or carving meat.
- Serrated: The saw-toothed edge of this long knife is essential for cutting bread but also does a great job slicing ripe tomatoes or trimming cake layers.
- Paring: A small, sturdy paring knife (3- to 4-inch blade) is key for detail work, like deveining shrimp, hulling strawberries and other tasks that require precision.