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Wednesday, 13 December 2017

A few notes on looking after your kitchen knives.

I am slowly replacing my kitchen knives with Zelite knives, mind you, my 12" French cooks knife will remain. I have had this over 15 years and although only sharpened once, is as sharp as the day I bought it, and I use it, amongst other things, to cut an avocada pear in half, right through the stone in the centre!

A lady, I've deleted her name, asked the following question on the Amazon Zelite page for one of their knives:
"Can anyone recommend a knife sharpener for this?"
Zelites answer was very comprehensive and I thought my readers would like to read it. There are so many different ideas for knife honing and sharpening, I thought my readers would like to see the expert's answer to the above question:

Firstly, Honing and Sharpening perform different functions. You should hone your knife regular – maybe every 6-8hrs worth of use and this will ensure it keeps its sharp edge.

Honing only removes the microscopic burr that it put on your edge after general use – it does not remove metal, only removes the burr and realigns the edge.

For honing steels, you will want one with a 10” or longer rod and with a hardness greater than the knife which is 56 Rockwell. Ceramic Honing rods are popular as here you don’t need to worry about hardness. I don’t have a specific one to recommend as the choice is so vast on Amazon.

Sharpening depends upon your skill level with using a whetstone. If you are confident using a whetstone, then we recommend the King 1000/6000 whetstone – this is very popular. A lot of our customers prefer to send their knives to a local sharpener if they are not as confident using a whetstone.

I actually found it difficult to use the whetstone at first, so I recommend practicing on an old knife if you choose this route. I found the technique in the below link to be the best and easiest to use for consistent results:
https://www.chefsteps.com/classes/knife-sharpening

Amazon is a great place to make these purchases as they have a great selection to choose from. Some customers choose the rotary water sharpeners like the Yaxell Knife Sharpener Gousharp Pro - here sharpening is simpler but you are then restricted to a fixed angle on your knife, which will be what ever the fixed wheel sharpening system you chose. We suggest the whetstones as you can make the blade angle to suit your specific needs. An example of a whetstone here.

General good tips are to cut on blade friendly materials such as wood, bamboo or plastic. Surfaces such as stone, glass or ceramic would quicken the dulling process.
The Chefsteps link above will help to understand about knife sharpening and honing.

Ampers.

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