What is Santok for?
Any hostess should have knives for all occasions in the kitchen. And why do you need santoku? And how to use it?
What is this knife?
Santoku is a Japanese versatile kitchen knife. During its development, the finishing French knife was taken as a basis, but later such a peculiar modification was adapted to all the needs of traditional Japanese cuisine, and Santoku became a universal and almost irreplaceable product.
Distinctive features of the product
Santoku looks like a traditional cook knife, but still has some special features:
- A small and light grip. This provides not only more reliable and comfortable gripping of the knife, but also makes the cutting as fast and comfortable as possible. The fact is that the construction is ideally balanced, and the center of gravity is shifting precisely to the wide and heavier blade, which allows it to move rapidly, while the cook does not exert much effort and does not press on the knife.
- The blade has an asymmetrical sharpening, and the tip is the sharpest part.The butt is quite wide (about two millimeters), it has a rounding at the end, which makes it, firstly, more comfortable, and secondly, safer. In addition, this configuration reduces the gap between the blade and the surface of the table or board when lowering the knife from the heel (base) to the cutting part, and this also provides comfort.
- The length of the blade can vary from 12 to 20 centimeters, the average value is 18 (and the standard is 18.8 cm), and this is somewhat less compared to the parameters of a traditional cook knife. The profile angle is about 16-18 degrees (for most other products, it is equal to 20-25 degrees).
How to use santoku?
What is a Santok knife for? Its name is literally translated from Japanese as “three good things”, and this means that the product is designed to perform three main tasks in the kitchen, namely, to help chop, cut and chop. With the help of Santokou, you can cut both vegetables and meat or fish, as well as chop greens, cereals and other products, if necessary. But here bones and other solid components of food cannot be cut with such a knife, it can lead to damage and grinding of the blade.
The cutting technique is quite simple; any novice cook will master it. Santoku is designed either for single and downward movements when cutting vegetables or fruits, or for transitions when pressing on the board from the blade base to the tip, which allows grinding products with a loose or soft texture, such as meat or fish. But cutting by swinging is limited due to sharp sharpening. But in any case, grind food can be both cubes and thin slices.
Pluses knife Santoku:
- It is not the longest, so even inexperienced housewives and novice cooks can use it.
- Minimum effort for efficient cutting. The product is balanced in such a way that the cook does not have to press on it in order to grind even solid foods.
- A very comfortable, relatively small handle that can be held even by a person with a small palm.
- Such a product can be considered universal, because with it you can grind any food, including meat, vegetables, fish, fruits, greens, cereals, and so on. And all the food is cut equally quickly and easily.
- This knife has a blade no longer than 20 centimeters, so it is safe, especially compared to the traditional cook, having a length of about 30 centimeters.
- Compact size. Such a product can be stored not only in a special stand, but also in an ordinary kitchen cabinet, because the knife will fit in the box for sure.
As for the minuses, then we can relate to them, firstly, a rounded butt. And so, for example, it is not possible to remove fruit cores with the help of a santoku or perform curly complex cutting. Secondly, such a knife is relatively heavy, but it is the increased weight of the blade that is designed to provide more comfortable cutting and even pieces at the exit.
How to make a choice?
When choosing a knife Santokou guided by the following criteria:
- The material of which the blade is made. As a rule, knives are made of durable high-quality stainless steel, and Santoku is no exception. The more reliable such material will be, the longer the product will last and the more comfortable the cutting will provide.
- Be sure to appreciate the grip. It should be such as to keep the knife in your hands as comfortable as possible.The ideal option is a wooden handle: it does not slip in the hands, has a small weight, is pleasant to the touch, is strong enough and environmentally friendly. In addition, your palms will probably not sweat. And if the tree is treated with special impregnations, then it will be resistant to moisture and fungi. The cheapest material is plastic. But it is fragile, short-lived and causes increased sweating during prolonged cutting. The metal is more durable, but not very pleasant to the touch and increases the weight of the product, which can cause some discomfort. It is also worth considering the attachment of the handle to the blade. It is best to choose models in which the handle is attached to the steel rod, which is a continuation of the blade.
- Pay attention to the blade. It must meet all the requirements for Santok knives, and have all the standard parameters. But some modifications are possible. So, on sale there are models that have grooves in the blade. On the one hand, they prevent the product from sticking during the cutting process and make the process more comfortable. But, on the other hand, for the manufacture of such products used softer steel, so the knife will be less durable and reliable.
- It is better to purchase such a product in a specialized store, and before buying, request from the seller the documents and certificates accompanying the products that confirm the authenticity and quality.
- It is better to trust proven manufacturers, although the products of popular and well-established brands are not cheap, but they serve faithfully for a long time.
If in your arsenal a novice or experienced chef does not yet have a Japanese knife santoku, then be sure to purchase it, it will in any case come in handy!
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