Good Kitchen Knives are a Must. What Makes a Good Kitchen Knife.
I have gotten into cooking due to diabetic issues and I'm tired of all the processed foods out there. It is so easy to just stop and buy tacos or burgers but I have noticed that I don't feel great after eating them and my Dr. had begun giving me fits about eating this stuff. Rather than listening to his complaining and in an effort to feel better I decided to take up cooking fresh organic foods several times a week. My favorites things to cook are Stir Fry's and soups.
These dishes require lots of cut up veggies and when I began this endeavor I soon found my cutlery tools to be lacking. I began to think that this flimsy cutlery set I bought was made out of Campbell Soup cans. They truly were flimsy and would not hold and edge. I soon learned a dull knife is a dangerous thing. You are having to use too much force to make cuts and will soon cut yourself.
I decided to do some research on knives and here is what I found. There is a huge difference in knives based upon the types of steel used in their production. Unfortunately there is no one best choice. All these steels have pros and cons that you must weigh based on personal needs and desires.
(Hock Chef Knife - Carbon Steel Blank)
Carbon Steel Blades hold a sharper edge and hold it longer than other steels but they will patina (steel turns a dark color) over time and they can rust. To keep them from rusting I wash & dry them by hand (directly after using them ) and then wipe them down with my favorite cooking oil. While they require a little extra care I think it is well worth it. My favorite brand of Carbon steel Blanks are the Hock Brand. You will not be disappointed in these.
(Feather Pattern VG-10 Chef Knife Blank)
VG10 Damascus Steel - What is this you might ask. Well it is a cutlery grade stainless steel produced in Japan. The name stands for V Gold 10 ("gold" meaning quality) & 10 being the best. VG-10 is a stainless steel with a high carbon content containing 1% Carbon, 15% Chromium, 1% Molybdenum, 0.2% Vanadium, and 1.5% Cobalt. This steel holds an edge almost as good as Carbon steel blades it doesn't have the disadvantage of patinating or rusting. You will also find that the Damascus process leaves varying patterns depending how it is made and thus each blade is a true work of art. Here are some of my favorite blanks that I have made some of my knives from. VG-10 Kitchen Knives.
Stainless Steel Blades
Stainless steel Knife blanks do not patina or rust to the point of pitting. The disadvantage is they dont take as sharp of an edge. There are various grades of stainless so for more information on that Click Here. Stainless Steel knives are the standard in most kitchen's and are generally the most economical choice..We carry a wide variety of Stainless Steel Knife Blanks.
As stated above I have become a fan of Asian cuisine and have discovered using various pastes to add flavor to my dishes. If you have never tried cooking with pastes I highly recommend you try them. Some of my favorites are Go-Chu-Jang which is great for a variety of things including adding a spicy taste to Stir Fry or even to make a spicy Buffalo Wing Sauce. There are tons of recopies on line for this paste. Another favorite is Tom Yum Paste.. I use it ta flavor my Tom Yum Soup.
A few others Interesting and flavorful cooking items I have found is a Black Pepper Garlic Paste, Roland Hot Chili Infused Oil, Garlic Lemon Grass Simmer Sauce, & Sun Luck Hot & Spicy Stir Fry Sauce. I have used all of these to make my Stir Fry Sauce and individually in other dishes. I can say do not be afraid to experiment and use different combinations of these products to suit your individual tastes.