Knife skills are one of the top fundamental areas to growing your skills and confidence in the kitchen, so whether you are just starting out or have some cooking knowledge there is always room for growth. We wanted to share some of our top tips for strengthening your knife skills. Today we are going over our first 5 tips, with our next 5 coming tomorrow.
Why would knife skills be important? Recipes take prep, which means cutting ingredients. Growing theses skills helps with safety, consistency, speed, and efficiency in the kitchen. With so many areas effected, it’s definitely a skill to focus on.
Use a Sharp Knife
A sharp knife helps with precision of your cuts, as well as safety in your prep. With a sharp edge on your knife, it is much easier to cut through ingredients, which allows you to focus more on the specific cut you are trying to achieve and better opportunity for success with it. When using a dull knife, you have to put more pressure on it while cutting ingredients. This means that your knife is most likely tearing and damaging ingredients vs having a clean and precise cut. It is also a lot safer to use a sharp knife because you are putting less pressure on it. That means that if you happened to cut yourself you would be able to stop it faster and it would be a cleaner cut.
When using your steel, you are honing your knife. This is realigning the teeth of your blade which will help keep its sharp edge longer. It is not sharpening, but it is very helpful in your knife’s efficiency and maintenance.
Having a Good Grip
You want a firm, yet loose grip on your knife. Basically, a not too tight, but also not too loose. You also want to have what could be called a pinch grip with your index finger and thumb on either side of the blade. This helps with stability and control while cutting.
Dicing, Slicing, Chopping
Mastering simple cuts and technique are your first steps when growing knife skills. You want to become successful in these before trying more difficult skills. Your knife skills will become stronger as you work through mastering simple dicing, slicing and chopping. Then you can work your way into finer cuts that take more skill.
Knife skills take time, so do not feel the need to rush through them. We all have to start somewhere, and it only gets better the more you do it. It is more important to pay attention to safety and accuracy over speed, since those are more important when starting out. Your speed will naturally catch up with practice.
If you haven’t joined our Facebook group Meal Planning for Busy Parents yet, please check it out HERE. That is where you can find our community and easily chat with us. We also go live every Friday to answer your questions and talk about all kinds of cooking and meal planning topics. We’ll see you tomorrow with more tips!