How to choose a Japanese kitchen knife?


Japanese blacksmiths created the legendary swords — katanas. This is what made them famous all over the world. Traditions have survived to this day. Thanks to this, in our time, the Japanese present amazing kitchen knives that are distinguished by quality, sharpness, beautiful appearance, maximum comfort during work and serve as an indispensable assistant, both in a professional kitchen and at home.

The Japanese are aesthetes. It is believed that food should not only be tasty, but also beautifully and thinly sliced. And for this you need a professional blade.

To begin with, consider the undoubted advantages of a Japanese knife:

  • Handwork has a positive effect on the quality of the product. The master often leaves an autograph on the blade.
  • The blade sharpening angle of 15 degrees increases the cutting properties of the product. It is not necessary to apply force during use. Compared to European knives, the sharpening angle is minimal.
  • Frequent editing is not required. An economy class blade keeps sharpening for at least 3 months, more expensive knives — a year.
  • A Japanese knife is capable of quickly cutting the thinnest slices from a product of any hardness.
  • High hardness of steel without harmful toxic impurities and a handle made of high-quality material prolong the durability of the product. The service life is much longer than the European counterpart.

Types of steel:

  • Shirogami, which means white paper. It contains an iron alloy with a high carbon content. The amount of impurities is minimal. The blade is very sharp, but not flexible.
  • Aogami is blue paper. The alloy of this steel consists of chromium, vanadium, tungsten with the addition of carbon in large quantities. The blade is strong and durable.
  • Vg-10. Steel is strong, durable and corrosion resistant.
  • Zdp-189. High carbon steel with chromium addition.
  • Damascus steel. Laminated carbon steel.

Japanese knife shape:

  • Triangle. The butt and the blade are of the same length and are symmetrical to the point of the product.
  • Irregular triangle. The butt of the product is rounded, often beveled. The bevel may be perpendicular to the knife edge.
  • Petal. The butt and the blade are close to each other at a minimum distance. The angle between them is minimal.
  • Rectangle. The blade is made in the form of a rectangle, and the opposite side of the blade is rounded.

The handle of Japanese knives usually flows smoothly into the blade itself.

Types of knives:

  • Chef’s knife
  • Meat knife
  • Knife for carving fish
  • Seafood knife
  • Knife for peeling and cutting vegetables
  • Knife for sushi and rolls
  • carving knife
  • Boning knife

Japanese knives have a sharpness index — “kirenaga”. It indicates the sharpness time of the knife, the so-called sharpened state of the product. For home use, this indicator is not so important, but for a professional chef, the sharpness of the blade is a very significant fact.

Tojiro Products suitable for working in a regular kitchen and for a restaurant chef. Knives differ from other Japanese products in their special strength, blade length and multi-layered blade. For home use, a knife made of 1-3 layers of metal with a wooden handle is suitable.

For other needs, the number of metal layers in the product can reach up to 30-40. The blade and handle are made of steel and form a single whole.

The most popular models that will find application in both conventional and professional kitchens:

  • Utility knife TOJIRO F-313 Made of Vg-10 high carbon steel, corrosion resistant. The blade is multifunctional, practical and easy to use. The product lives up to its name and easily copes with both chopping meat and slicing fish. The knife can easily replace a nakiri vegetable knife, cut fruits and vegetables. The utility knife can be used as a steak knife, it cuts butter, cheese and bread.

  • Chef Knife TOJIRO F-312 has a three-layered blade 18 cm long and an ergonomic wooden handle. The chef knife is the basic tool of a professional chef and is designed for gastronomic work with meat, or rather cutting large chopped parts. Also, chef’s kitchen knives are quite suitable for the primary cutting of large fish, poultry, slicing large fruits, bread, greens. They also cut fruits, greens and bread. The chef’s knife is capable of performing about 90% of all work in the kitchen.

  • Chef Knife Santoku TOJIRO F-311 can replace a chef’s knife, debu, utility and nakiri. Santoku means 3 uses in Japanese. Initially, they prepared rolls and sushi. But he easily copes with meat, poultry and vegetables. The shape of the knife resembles a «sheep’s leg». Due to this, the distance between the blade and the cutting board is minimal on the entire surface of the blade. The knife is able to chop, chop, cut into cubes, thin slices or strips. Santoku is lighter than a chef’s knife and looks like a kitchen hatchet. The heel and blade of the product are located on the same line.

Recommendations for choosing a knife for the home:

  • Sharpening angle 15-18 degrees.
  • Blade length 110-220 mm.
  • Blade hardness 52-60 units on the Rockwell scale.
  • The handle is wooden or rubberized.

Choose your perfect companion from Tojiro products and cook with pleasure.


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