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What Is a Chef's Knife?

Learn about chef knives in this Howcast video with expert Dan Delavan.


Hi my name is Dan Delvin, I'm the owner/operator of Plastic Cutlery in Costa Mesa, California. We have a great selection, we also have a website, and today we're going to be talking about knives. Okay the chef's knife is a wider bladed knife. It's for doing a large quantity knife, usually in a chopping or semi-rocking position. So you'll have a wider blade, than a carving knife or a regular utility that will be more narrow.

This way you have more finger clearance so when you put the knife down and you go to use it, you can rock with it and your fingers won't cut. Now there is a trend with a lot of chefs in using it in a forward motion and again, like anything there's a lot of ways in which to use it. But the basic motion of a chef's knife should be a chopping, rocking motion like this. A lot of chefs will put their fingers up against it and as long as your fingers are high enough you're not going to hit the edge on it. And that way you can chop really fine. Your chef's knife should be wide enough and should have enough curve in it.

There's some knives that have more curve, where you're going to get an even more rocking motion on it. And you'll also have the bigger chef's knives for the restaurants where they're doing larger quantities. And again you have the wide blade, more of a gentle curve on it. Some of them do have a more drastic curve, this one is a gentle curve but it's great for chopping up a head of lettuce, carrots or whatever you're cutting a large quantity of.

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