Cooking Utensils – Very Basic – Item 3 – Knife Sharpener

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Assuming you already have a fork, spoon, knife, plates, some kind of frying pan and a basic pot of some sort, there are only 3 things that  a real cook needs.   This is the third.  See other posts for items 1 (chef’s knife) and 2 (cutting board).

Way back when I started to list the 3 basic items needed for a good cook, I wrote about the first 2, but never got back to the third item.  The third item is the knife sharpener.  Since knives get dull, the answer to a dull knife is a knife sharpener.  The one I have traditionally used is an Ekco knife sharpener. This is the kind that you may have seen from time to time in the supermarket or the discount store and thought it won’t possibly work.  It actually does work pretty well.  The reason why I haven’t written about it before now is that it’s hard to find.  When I did find one in the supermarket and then again on Amazon, the product didn’t seem to be quite the same as the old one I have.  In fact the one review on Amazon for the new version wasn’t very good.  And while it worked, I needed to use it almost every time I used my knife.  So maybe there was a better answer.

It’s taken me all this time to get back to finding one I thought worthwhile to recommend here.  I found one.  It’s the Accusharp Knife Sharpener.  Just like the original Ekco I used for all these years, this is an inexpensive product which you might pass up as being something that just wouldn’t work.  Well it does work.  And it works really well.  To top that it’s easy to use.  It’s brought my old high carbon steel knife back to about the sharpest it’s ever been.  And the blade has held it’s edge well over several uses without needing a touch up.  Inexpensive and works well.  A winning combination.

One caution is that the sharpener can remove a lot of metal from the blade.  So don’t over use it or put much pressure on the tool.  For a really dull blade removing more metal might just be needed to get the edge back into shape.  But once it’s back in shape, be gentle. 

  AccuSharp 001 Knife Sharpener

Just a note, you’ll be using your other hand to hold the handle of the knife, not to take a picture.

 

A little truth in blogging here.  The picture above is not my high carbon steel knife.  In the picture is a very good Chicago Cutlery 7 1/2 inch stainless steel chef knife.  As high carbon steel tends to stain easily, the high carbon knife looked pretty ratty in the picture, so for whatever artistic merit the picture represents, I substituted my stainless knife.  For a brief glimpse of the high carbon steel knife, see the lasagna post.

Okay you might ask, what does he really use?  90% of the time I use the old $2.50 high carbon steel knife, which may be approaching antique status soon.  I’ve cut myself so many times with this knife, it just feels like part of me.  About 10% of the time I’ll use the Chicago Cutlery pictured above.  It is probably a better knife than old faithful.  I use it not for that reason, but because  I like to hear the blade ring when I take it out of the block.  Sounds just like a sword.  I also own a 10 inch Two Lions Sabatier chef knife (and as I’m finding out today, Two Lions is not a well-respected maker of Sabatier knives – and my little research today just proves you need to do a little research before buying some things) which I almost never use because it’s just too big for ordinary around the house cooking.  However, it is great on Halloween.  Just get yourself a hockey mask to go with it.

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