Japanese Kitchen Knives

The knives you have in your home kitchen make a statement about you and your culinary personality and taste. There are so many variations of culinary cutlery on the market today it is mind boggling! For many, many years the European style of kitchen knife dominated the marketplace and the homes in America. Names like Wustof, Messermeister, Forschner and so on were the commonplace in American kitchens for many generations.

Times have changed in recent years and now the gourmet home cook and professional culinary chef are discovering the quality and diversity of Japanese kitchen knives. Brands like Mac,Global,Misono, and Masahiro. All of the highest quality, built with premium carbon and stainless steels. These quality knives are made of forged stainless steel,forged carbon steel and folded or damascus steel blades. Some manufacturers make all three.

Since the popularity of Japanese kitchen knives this article will address one thing that many users of these fine knives do not know, and that is Japanese kitchen knife anatomy and terminology. Many people know with the European knives that a blade is a blade and a handle is a handle. Most people do not know anything about the terminology or parts of their Japanese knives, so lets look at some:

1. The Hawatari: This is the full length of the blade of your Japanese knife.

2. The Mune: This is the term used to describe the top of the Japanese knife blade, this is also called the “spine.”

3. The Sori: The term used to describe the main “belly” or main curvature of the blade of your Japanese knife.

4. The Hado: This is the primary cutting edge of a Japanese culinary knife.

5. The Hamato: The Hamato is the “heel” of the knife. It is the about 3/4 of an inch of the knifes edge that is nearest      to the knife handle.

With Japanese kitchen knives there is an entire language,culture and ceremony in the making of these fine knives whether they are handmade one at a time or factory produced

These wonderful kitchen knives are made under strict standards for performance and quality, which of course doesn’t make them a cheap purchase but they are definitely one purchase that it is worth getting your credit card out for.

The other way to get them is to make a list and see if anyone will buy them for you as a Christmas present. As they are so expensive it will have to be someone special but still worth trying.