What good is a expensive knife if you don’t keep it sharp?
Have you ever tried sawing a piece of lumber with a dull saw? It’s the same with a kitchen knife; you get the job done, but your arm falls off by the time you finish.
Most cookbooks suggest purchasing a steel to keep your knife sharp, but you need more.
A steel is great for removing the microscopic burrs and returning the blade to its original condition, but to actually sharpen a knife, you need a sharpening device.
The best, and the most expensive, are the electric sharpeners. I own the ChefsChoice 110 model that you see in the picture above.
It has foolproof magnetic guides that keep the blade at the precise angle to the diamond abrasives and when it comes to sharp knives, I want something fool proof.
It's a great machine and keeps my knives extremely sharp, so much so that I have to warn my wife when I sharpened them so she doesn't cut herself. But you have to take the time and sharpen them at least once a week, alright at least once a month.
You can also look for flat sharpening stones like the ones you honed your boy scout knife with, ceramic rods, manual pull through gizmos that attach to your kitchen cabinet, and even ones that are attached to another appliance.
Basic Knife Skills Video
Be sure to check out this very helpful knife skills video by my friend & author, Peter Hertzmann on properly holding and cutting with kitchen knives in his Basic Knife Skills Video presented here on the Reluctant Gourmet web site.
onlinesources: Knife Sharpeners
There are lots of sources for purchasing top brands for knife sharpeners. I suggest you check out your local department stores and kitchen supply shops.
You should only have to tell someone that will using your knives one time that they are very sharp and to stay away from the cutting edge. Anyone handling (even touching) the knife should ALWAYS assume that it is razor sharp.
Further, you should never have a dulled knife around where someone can use it. If it needs sharpening, store it away somewhere until it can be properly sharpened.
Whetstones are the best, but it needs skills and time to sharpen just a knife. Chef's Choice has many fixed-angle sharpeners and work great. The best is Work Sharp, flexible and versatile, delivers good results.
Now is all about speed and efficiency. Electric models are the best option.