The chef’s knife is possibly the most important knife that all kitchens should be equipped with. Although I said that each kitchen knife has a specific purpose which it was designed for, the chef’s knife is the most versatile of them all. It can be used for most basic kitchen tasks for example chopping up fruits and vegetables, dicing meat and slicing cheese. If you only ever buy one knife, make it a chef’s knife!
The paring knife is much smaller than the chef’s knife and it is mostly Kitchen Knife designed for use with fruits and vegetables. The small size makes it ideal for peeling and coring fruits, although it is not designed for chopping or slicing fruit, so you may need to switch knives for that.
A carving knife, as the name suggests, is designed specifically for carving joints of meat. The long, sharp blade is ideal to give you great control over the thickness of the slices and ensure that you don’t present people with thick doorstops of roast beef.
The cleaver is also designed to be used with meat, but not for carving. The large size makes this the knife of choice for cutting through bones and tough outer flesh. A cleaver can however also be quite handy for finer tasks such as finely chopping vegetables and herbs. The flat edge can also be great for crushing garlic, but you need to be careful that you do this in a safe manner and don’t risk cutting yourself on the sharp side of the blade.
Unlike most of the other knives we’ve talked about, a bread knife has a serrated blade. This makes it ideal for the sawing action which is needed to slice freshly baked bread. Using a nice sharp bread knife will let you slice bread cleanly and help to keep the inside of the bread soft and springy instead of compressing it all together as you cut.
A boning knife is much smaller than a chef’s knife and has a long, thin blade which makes it perfect for deboning meat such as chicken. This style of kitchen knife comes in different sizes for use with different sized cuts of meat.
The cheese knife is the one which has the funny shaped curved blade which ends in a two-pronged arch. This is used like a fork to be able to pick up the cheese which has been sliced off. The knife itself is similar to a butter knife and is designed for cutting through hard cheese or soft cheese, both quite easily.
Although we have mentioned quite a few of the basic kitchen knives here there are also some others which are designed for specific tasks which you may need far less often, for example oyster knives are only really useful if you regularly eat oysters! But the kitchen knives we have talked about here are really those which are fundamental to most everyday tasks and are definitely the ones you need to make sure you have in your kitchen drawer. If you don’t currently have most or all of these different knives, investing in a knife block can be a good way of making sure that you have all of the basic kitchen knives you will need to do most things easily and safely in your kitchen.