~ Totally Undeserving of the James Beard Award

~ Completely Undeserving of the James Beard Award ~

Thursday, May 26, 2011

The beginning...

Well, here I go.  A blog.   Now what?  Write something interesting stupid.  OK.  

So cooking, recipes, food, equipment, pet peeves and other thoughts.

First things first I suppose...equipment.  I think I will throw in something each post with a food thing and also an equipment thing.

Anyway, equipment.  The first thing for someone who has any interest in cooking better is a proper knife. You don't need a full arsenal of every type of weapon, if you have the basics you will do fine.  First of all a 10" or 12" butcher knife is a must-have, stainless steel...carbon steel knives retain the edge better but a pain to maintain.  Go to a restaurant supply store or kitchen store.  Don't go to some "...mart" or a store at the end of a mall.  Drive to a better store where you should get some customer service.

HOLD the knife, set it down, pick it up..make sure it feels comfortable in your hand, the weight, the handle material and shape...try another, narrow it down, do it again.  That being said, my favorite is a knife I didnt pre-select, it was wedding present, nearly 25 years ago and it still is in near perfect condition.  Its a Gerber 10".  Probably since I have used it for 24+ years is the reason it is my first go-to blade.  Pay a bit more and you wont regret it.

And let me say this...a dull knife is useless and dangerous.  Contrary to how some people may think, a dull knife is more dangerous than a sharp knife, it wont go where you want it, slips off the tomato and thus beginning your trip to the bathroom searching for bandaids for your sliced open digit. A knife is an extension of your hand, it needs to go where you want it to go...exactly.  Hold the knife with your thumb and forefinger grasping the blade.  It's not a hammer so don't hold it that way.

I picked up this sharpening doo-hicky and it seems to do well. 

After sharpening your knife, gently wipe the blade across a white towel, if you did it correctly you should see gray matter from the blade on the towel. 

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