How to Use a Knife Sharpener: 12 Steps
A sharp knife is an essential tool in every kitchen. Not only does it make food preparation easier, but it also reduces the risk of accidents when cutting through food. One of the simplest ways of maintaining your knives is by using a knife sharpener. In this article, we will guide you through 12 steps on how to properly use a knife sharpener.
1. Choose the right sharpener: There are several types of knife sharpeners such as honing rods, whetstones, and electric sharpeners. Choose the one that suits your needs and preferences.
2. Start with a clean knife: Clean your knife thoroughly before you begin sharpening. Remove any food particles or debris to avoid damaging the sharpener.
3. Read the instructions: Familiarize yourself with your chosen sharpener by reading its instructions or manual to properly understand its usage.
4. Set up a stable workspace: Find a flat and stable surface where you can securely place your sharpener while working on your knives.
5. Adjust the angle of the sharpener: Most sharpeners have an adjustable angle setting to accommodate different types of knives and their bevel angles, usually between 15-20 degrees. Refer to your manufacturer’s guide to determine the appropriate angle for your specific knife.
6. Hold the handle firmly: Grip the handle of the sharpener (if applicable) with one hand while securing the base with your other hand for stability.
7. Start with coarse grit (whetstones only): If you are using a whetstone, begin with a coarse grit (lower number) side of your stone for fixing any nicks or realigning blade edges.
8. Begin sharpening: Place your knife’s blade at the predetermined angle against the sharpener, exerting moderate pressure as you glide it across the length of the blade’s edge.
9. Maintain consistent pressure: Throughout the sharpening process, maintain even pressure while drawing the blade across the surface of the sharpener.
10. Alternate sides of the blade: Be sure to work on both sides of the blade to maintain optimal sharpness. Switch between sides with each pass or after a specific number of passes, as recommended by the knife sharpener’s instructions.
11. Progress to a finer grit (whetstones only): When using a whetstone and you have achieved your desired edge on the coarse grit, switch to a finer grit (higher number) side to refine and polish your knife’s edge.
12. Test for sharpness: After sharpening your knife, gently glide a paper towel or piece of newsprint against its edge. If it easily slices through without tearing, your knife is good to go. Otherwise, repeat steps 8-11 until satisfied with the sharpness.
By following these 12 simple steps, you can keep your knives in tip-top shape and enhance their performance in your kitchen tasks. Always exercise safety precautions while handling knives and enjoy efficiency in your meal preparations!