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Juan Vergara Hovey

Juan the Sharpener

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How to Care for Your Knives

Once your knife is sharp, how to you keep it that way?

 

Here are five easy tips for doing so.

1. Cut on wood, not plastic.

 

People like plastic cutting boards because they’re convenient. Trouble is, they dull sharp knives. A wood board is better. An end-grain board is better yet.

 

2. Keep it clean, please.

For a sharp knife, cleanliness is next to – well, long life. Once you’re done cutting, don’t leave your knife to its own devices on the counter or, worse, in the sink. Wash it, rinse it off, dry it and put it away.

3. Think “social distancing” when storing your knives.

 

Nothing chips a sharp edge faster than another sharp edge. This means your knives won’t get along with the neighbors if you let them clank around in a drawer. Keep the peace with drawer dividers or a knife block on the counter.

 

4. Avoid the daily grind.

 

You know those fool-proof $19.95 sharpening devices advertised on TV? At best they'll give you a toothy edge that tears your tomato, not a sharp edge that slices it. At worst they'll ruin a good knife. If you have one, call me and I'll come throw it away for you.

 

5. Spare the rod, spoil the knife.

 

Speaking of toothy edges, that sharpening steel that came with your knives isn’t of much use, either. It will give you a toothy edge on a dull knife, to be sure, but if you use it on a sharp knife, you’ll destroy the edge. Put the thing away, and when your knives go dull, call me. I’ll be happy to come sharpen them.