While it is true that Cave-people used crude, rudimentary tools to cook, we have evolved over the years and have adapted to modern conveniences. One of those newfangled devices we have come to appreciate is the knife. Any cook, Human or Cro-Magnon, will have a tough time in the kitchen without a good set of knives.
There are many parts of the kitchen where you can get away with buying on the cheap. But, there are two areas where you need to consider a top-shelf product … pots/pans and knives. The quality of the steel and the integrity in manufacturing processes are crucial when it comes to cutlery. So, chose a brand with a reputation and history of making a quality product. My personal choice has always been Sabatier Diamant. While there has been much confusion about the Sabatier brands, the Diamant line is definitely one of the original lines and still manufactured in Thiers, France using time-tested techniques and designs.
No matter which brand you choose, there are two things you want to look for in a quality knife. One is forging. You want a knife that is “fully forged”, which means that the blade, bolster and tang are all made from one piece of steel. The other thing to look for is a “full tang” No, we’re not talking about the favorite breakfast drink of astronauts. The tang is the part of the knife steel that forms the handle. Usually two pieces of Micarta, or other durable material, is riveted to the tang to make the handle. A full tang extends all the way to the end of the handle which provides greater stability and better balance in the piece. A top quality knife is also hand shaped and sharpened after it is forged and riveted.
Another consideration is the type of knives you need. While there are now specialized knives for just about every possible culinary application, you can get away with as few as four types to cover any situation you will face: butchers knife, slicing or filet, paring, and serrated. Throw in a good pair of kitchen shears and a quality steel to hone your knives and you should be ready for any cutting, slicing or chopping procedure you are called upon to perform. Plus, you’ll be comforted in the knowledge that you’re a quantum leap ahead of the traditional caveperson’s cutlery cull.
©2009 Caution: Caveman Cooking/UHearMe, Inc. All rights reserved. This originally appeared on the Caution: Caveman Cooking blog at https://cavemancooking.wordpress.com authored by Caveman. This may be shared and reprinted as long as this entire copyright message accompanies it.