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Japanese knife: Santoku

Among the Japanese blades most appreciated and diffused in the world we find the santoku. Due to its compact size and versatility, this blade excels at most kitchen tasks. Santoku can literally be translated as “three virtues”, referring to meat, vegetable and fish, but also to cut, mince,chop. The santoku is a multitasking blade, but like any Japanese knife, it also lends itself better to certain uses more than others.

The characteristics of a Japanese santoku knife

If you are looking for to be able to make clean cuts with a single stroke, the santoku is not the best option. On other hand, if we recommend a simple cut, mince or chisel food, the santoku is the perfect blade; even for those who don’t have much experience using a knife.

We must remain consistent when we talk about a multitasking knife, certainly allows us to accomplish a large number of tasks, but in some cases other types of blades will be more indicated.

Santoku is its use with food

  • Vegetables. Due to its shape and geometry, the santoku allows us to easily perform many cuts, such as mincing, paring, chiselling while preserving the organoleptic qualities of food and even making decorative cuts.
  • Meat. The fine blade of the santoku allows us to easily cut and work pieces of meat, but beware of the presence of bones and cartilages that are too hard.
  • Fish. Despite the size of the santoku, you can easily fillet and slice small fish, while avoiding cutting the edges, as this could damage the blade.

In our shop you will find many pieces that can meet your requirements. We invite you to contact us for any questions or doubts.

Differences between a Japanese santoku knife and a common chef’s knife

Many times the santoku is compared to a western chef’s knife, think again because these two blades are totally different. Knives of oriental origin, especially the Japanese, embrace a totally different philosophy, namely that of preserving food.

In addition, certain physical characteristics make their use very different.

Western knives are made with fairly soft steels with a carbon content well below 1%, which makes the blades thicker, less sharp and with the risk of dulling more quickly.

Japanese blades are forged with very hard steels, with a carbon rate always higher than 1%, this allows to have much thinner blades, with a cutting edge that will remain very sharp over time.

Admittedly, Japanese blades have a higher risk of breakage, but that is not a negative note, because good gestures and habits are enough for our knife to last for decades.

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