Knife Sharpening Tips

The secret to taking care of your cutlery is simple: keep your knives sharp! How often should you sharpen your knives? How in the world do you sharpen a knife, anyway? Here are a few simple steps to help you.

How to determine IF you need to sharpen: Look at the edge.

Get under a bright light and hold up the edge. You’ll see reflections on flat spots and nicks. If this is so, it’s time to start sharpening.

The most common home sharpening methods are using sharpening steel and using a commercial knife sharpener.

Using Sharpening Steel:
Step 1: Hold the steel - a metal rod designed for sharpening knives - in one hand.
Step 2: With the other hand, hold the knife by its handle.
Step 3: Place the knife just under the handle of the steel, with the knife handle touching the bottom of the steel handle.
Step 4: With the knife at a 45-degree angle to the steel, hold the steel rod steady and draw the knife blade down the steel. Repeat on other side of blade.
Step 5: Repeat several times until the entire cutting surface of the knife has been drawn across the steel on both sides of the blade.
NOTE: It's critical to make sure you're using the sharpening steel properly; otherwise you can do damage to the integrity (and life) of the knife. We recommend you watch this great, informative little video by Gordon Ramsey (of Hell's Kitchen). If anyone knows how to sharpen a knife, it's him!

Using a Commercial Knife Sharpener:
There are a few varieties of these, but personally we like the W├╝sthof Manual Knife & Scissors Sharpener. This is a VERY simple tool to use. It has a carbide section for sharpening, a ceramic section to finely hone and finish, and a floating ceramic rod to bevel scissor blades. Keeps almost every piece of cutlery perfectly sharp and is very safe to use, too!

Personally, I sharpen my knives every time before I use them - it's a great habit to get into. And, once you've begun the practice of taking good care of your knives it becomes routine.

Happy Sharpening!!

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