after dinner sneeze

a lot of g says, t says

An Ode to [Sharp] Knives

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t says: I like kitchen knives. I like sharp kitchen knives. I like cutting tomatoes without squishing them. I like dicing onions without shedding a tear. I like to see how thinly I can slice garlic and lemons … for no apparent reason. It’s an illness – and it’s contagious (more on that later).  It’s also number 3 on our list!

I’d be willing to bet that 9 out of every 10 times that g and I cook, we need to cut some food product before cooking it (it’s been a long time since we’ve had frozen dinners or boxed mac-and-cheese). I think that the only courses that commonly evade our knives are desserts (although I recently had to cut bacon for chocolate chip cookies, so there are exceptions). Consequently, I think sharp knives deserve a spot on the list of interesting equipment in our kitchen; we use them a ton and they’re not normal people’s knives …

It all started two and a half years ago, when g and I made our wedding registry. I got her permission to add a knife to the list. There were these really cool looking knives by the manufacturer Shun; the blades had these really fancy wavy patterns. It was like having knife-bling! And it was called a “Santoku” – a Japanese name! That makes it at least 7 times cooler! Well, in the end, no one bought it for us (I was told later that knives are perceived by many as awful gifts, and, in some cultures, even have very negative meanings if given as gifts), but that was a blessing in disguise. Now that we had to afford cutlery on our own, I had to hit the internet and figure out what was good and what was not-as-good (e.g. Santokus are not as useful as you think – no matter how often you see Rachel Ray wielding one – but we do have one). Of course, all of that information is viewed by many as incredibly boring, so I made up a separate shopping-for-knives primer. Long story short – we have a stable of sharp knives that I sharpen regularly (that’s right, knives dull over time!). Here’s one of ’em:

This is my go-to knife: Zoe

But are sharp knives actually important? Well – let’s just say that if I somehow convinced g that sharper is better, then it must be real, ‘cuz she is not fooled easily (e.g. she does not believe that faster cars are better than slower ones, no matter how much I try to convince her). It’s progressed to the point that nowadays, I sometimes feel guilty because I know that every time she picks up a blunt knife (e.g. at our parents’ houses – no offense moms and dads), she’s thinking of her knife, Sammy (yes, they have names – what? is that not “normal”?). As a result – when traveling to our folks’ homes during the holidays, when we anticipate helping with cooking, we bring a knife with us (what? is that not “normal”, either?).

Written by afterdinnersneeze

19 March 2010 at 8:33am

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