- By Daniel Smith
- Published Yesterday
Whether you are planning to buy a single Japanese knife or a set of knives, choosing the right products is important. How do you do this? Before you visit a cutlery shop, it is necessary to understand the material and make of the blades of the knives. Here are a few details regarding this that would be of help in making a well-informed decision.
Material of the Blade
The best Japanese knives are usually made from high carbon steel, an alloy consisting of iron and carbon. The blades made from this material are known for their sharpness and hardness. Whether you want to cut and debone big fish or carve overripe fruits, the fine edge of these blades is capable of accomplishing the task without much effort.
The downside of the high carbon steel knives is that they are prone to rust and tarnish. This is the reason you have to take care of these knives properly. You need to wash them with water and soap after every use and dry them with a soft cloth to keep them clean. Applying a coat of vegetable oil also prevents rust and tarnish on the blade.
The knives with stainless steel blades have become more popular nowadays for the simple reason that they do not require much care and maintenance. Stainless steel blades are made from alloys of iron with other metals like nickel, chromium, carbon, and so on. However, stainless steel blades are not as hard or as sharp as high carbon steel blades.
Construction of the Blade
The blocked or stamped knives are cut from a single metal sheet that has the same thickness. The grinding of the metal sheet forms the edge of the blade. These blades do not have bolsters. Handles are later added to the tang. While blocked knives are quite common, they are not of very high quality.
The forged knives use the traditional method of Japanese sword making. In this method, the metal chunk is heated and pounded to create the knife blade. The drop forge machine is used for shaping the blade. The blades are forged from layers of steel. These knives have thick bolsters and full tang.
The forged knives are of a better quality than the stamped knives. They are better in terms of sharpness, weight and balance as compared to the blocked knives. However, the downside is that these knives are a little expensive. However, if you consider the quality, the cost seems to be of little consequence.
The sintered knives are made by fusing together the blade and the tang. This is a comparatively new technique for knife making. However, the results are better than blocked or stamped knives. The expense, on the other hand, is comparatively lower than that of the forged knives.
When choosing kitchen knives, you need to focus on the material and method of construction of the blade. This would help you understand which knives would be appropriate for your purpose. Good quality forged knives with high carbon steel blades may be a little expensive; however, they are the best in terms of sharpness and hardness.
Daniel Smith is the editor of a cookery magazine. He provides a brief overview of the materials and construction methods of Japanese knives that would be of help whether you need to buy a chef knifeor a paring knife. If you are looking for traditional Honyaki or Kasumi knives, he suggests you visit http://www.lohira.com/for such products.