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  • The Chopping Blog

A New Knife Can Change Your Life

Emily T
Posted by Emily T on Jul 20, 2016


Some people lust after Mercedes Benzes, but my junior high friends and I, we dreamed about having our own refrigerator when we grew up. Call us kooky, but we spent many a sleepover swapping future fantasies about what our apartments would look like, and how we would decorate them, and how we would all have Kitchen-Aids in our favorite colors (which everyone knows is the Cadillac --are those still cool?--of stand mixers).

Of course, adult life is never exactly how you imagine it. A Kitchen Aid might as well be a Mercedes Benz at this stage for it is quite simply not an affordable purchase. But then again, I'm not a huge sweets person, and while I make a mean pizza dough, it's not really in my everyday-life wheelhouse. But there was one big purchase I have longed to make that I could justify with how I would use it everyday: a really sharp, high quality knife. 

Shun KnifeThere were only two cookbooks in my second grade classroom and I read both of them cover to cover several times. (They were a Care Bears cookbook and Roald Dahl's Revolting Recipes, if you're curious). My love of cookbooks-as-unwinding-tool never did wane, and they all deemed one piece of equipment king, that elusive chef's knife. 

KnifeMany years later I still worked with one lone ceramic knife, a cast off from a friend's old apartment. I wasn't yet ready to pull the trigger. One cookbook told me to drop "at least a Benjamin" if I could afford it, on a dapper new dagger. This would take some thought and consideration. At The Chopping Block, we carry a few lines of knives which have been deemed superior by our chefs and Owner/Chef Shelley Young. I faithfully tried all of these knives, trying to take notes as I chopped. Was this "the one"? I had never seen a knife in a thrift store, so surely all the really good ones stayed in their family circles until they wound up in some archeological dig. Perhaps my own would someday end up as a gift to my daughter on her wedding day. She might look at me confused, "I thought you would give me your ring, Mom." But this I would have lost many years ago since I don't keep track of jewelry unless it is glued to my finger. 

Shun knifeI snapped out of my haze when one day I saw a knife in our display case with a dappled surface, its many textured metal casting beautiful patterns of light. This was a Shun Premier, 8" Chef's Knife and it was so darn pretty I had to remind myself of the other criteria I was searching for: comfort, oh yeah, and sharpness. Shuns, one of our Japanese lines of knives, are known for their thin blades and sharp cut. I felt confident in my selection. The handle was sturdy and a pretty mahogany color. I was sold. The night of my purchase, my boyfriend and I practiced cutting tomatoes, marveling at how quickly the shiny steel cut through their skin without an ounce of resistance. I have always loved chopping, but the difference between a sharp knife and a dull one is miles apart in terms of speed and ease. Not to mention, a sharp knife is safer than one bound to ricochet off said tomato and hit you in the digits. Definitely no fun. 

knifeA new knife can make it fun to cook, once you get the motion down (and if you want a tutorial on that, check out our ever popular Knife Skills class where you will become so comfortable with a knife that you'll be interrupting its stories with "I've heard that one already" before you know it).

Proper Knife GripProper Knife Grip

A sharp knife that you love the look and feel of can be more exciting than a fast little sports car (maybe). A knife that matches your aesthetic and style—minimalist and spare, earthy and woodsy, edgy and futuristic, can make you spend more time in the kitchen, meaning more veggies in you diet, more money in your wallet and a great sense of pride. Come into our stores to check out our knife selection, get the most out of our super knowledgable staff and before you know it, you could feel just like Harry Potter in Olivander's shop! Plus, it's a great month to purchase a knife at The Chopping Block since they are all 20% off! If you can't wait to take a Knife Skills class, download our free guide Knife Skills 101. It's full of tutorials and videos to get you chopping like a pro.  

Knife Skills Guide

Topics: knives, knife, Knife Skills, shun, chef's knife

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