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View Full Version : deba knives: be honest



Patatas Bravas
02-24-2013, 02:19 PM
I have one deba only and was just cooking, and I noticed again that I used my deba for cutting a pumpkin. Not so much fish.

So I am wondering - yes, purist thinkers can be upset now, but be honest - how do you use your deba knives?

I think for me it is the majority for hard vegetables, and sometimes for a chicken, etc. Fish, yes, sometimes but it is hard to find nice fish I want to cut. For me maybe fish is only 10%20%. I am wondering if most people are really the same?

Benuser
02-24-2013, 02:23 PM
The problem is it's a heavy blade with a relatively fragile edge. Take care.

Patatas Bravas
02-24-2013, 02:31 PM
Of course! Always careful, even if I am cutting the 'incorrect' thing. Oh, and you didn't answer the question.

ThEoRy
02-24-2013, 02:36 PM
I cut fish with mine. Why did you buy a deba if you aren't cutting fish?

Yoni Lang
02-24-2013, 02:53 PM
the heavy weight of a deba helps with getting through bones.. the whole "letting the knife do most of the work" really comes through on this front

Montrachet
02-24-2013, 02:59 PM
Not in light preps but for bulk. Always in seasonal time when I have to smoke (for friends and family also) lots of salmons. For the hunting times... pretty good to for trimming deers. Also when we are doing lambs or Berkshire pork (kurubota) '' la broche.. (rotating upper a wood fire). Useful for me. I never think in % of time but in utility tools.

Patatas Bravas
02-24-2013, 03:02 PM
Uh-oh. Looks like I will get a lecture. ;)

Of course I bought it for fish. That's their purpose. However, I seem to have more good pumpkins than fish.

Maybe people are shy to admit using a knife for the wrong thing. But it's okay, you won't be arrested!

Montrachet - nice, your food sounds good

mhlee
02-24-2013, 03:06 PM
Fish - 100%.

chuck239
02-24-2013, 03:10 PM
I use mine for fish only. I have used to for vegetable prep once but it was only to text out an edge on it (since it was my first time sharpening a single bevel knife.) Since then, only on fish. Honestly, if I were to use it on vegetables, a pumpkin would probably not be my first choice. I would prefer to use one of my gyutos or even a suji...

-Chuck

Patatas Bravas
02-24-2013, 03:14 PM
Honestly, if I were to use it on vegetables, a pumpkin would probably not be my first choice. I would prefer to use one of my gyutos or even a suji...

Deba - just to open the hard pumpkin and gyuto after that.

ThEoRy
02-24-2013, 03:14 PM
Uh-oh. Looks like I will get a lecture. ;)

Of course I bought it for fish. That's their purpose. However, I seem to have more good pumpkins than fish.

Maybe people are shy to admit using a knife for the wrong thing. But it's okay, you won't be arrested!

Montrachet - nice, your food sounds good


What deba are you using?

Patatas Bravas
02-24-2013, 03:20 PM
I have just a small one 150mm mioroshi. It is good, but I prefer damaging it (but I haven't) rather than a gyuto.

mainaman
02-24-2013, 04:00 PM
I cook a lot more chicken than fish, and my Deba works great for braking down.

andur
02-24-2013, 04:04 PM
I use it for breaking down chicken and fish mainly. Works really well on chicken!

Deckhand
02-24-2013, 04:07 PM
I bought mine for Crab.:biggrin:
It works really well for that. I highly doubt I will ever sell mine.

Patatas Bravas
02-24-2013, 04:08 PM
Okay, so I am not the only one! :)

Zwiefel
02-24-2013, 04:12 PM
This is pretty much what keeps me from buying a deba or yanagi....I just don't deal with that kind of prep in my kitchen.

My thoughts have been turning towards a usuba though....those are for general veggie prep, right? Kiritsuke?

shaneg
02-24-2013, 04:29 PM
Fish, chicken and duck.
I work with Asian food so no pumpkin here.

When I used to do pumpkin in the past I have a wusthof culinar 240mm that I only ever used with pumpkin.
Too heavy really to use for much else, one swipe and it was cut in two.

echerub
02-24-2013, 04:42 PM
I'm a deba purist. I only use mine on fish. I'll use other tools for chicken or hard squash.

stevenStefano
02-24-2013, 04:54 PM
My thoughts have been turning towards a usuba though....those are for general veggie prep, right? Kiritsuke?

If you're doing a lot of veg an usuba wouldn't be a bad idea if you want to try a single-bevel. From what I've read a kirutsuke is very hard to master though, even though they look badass. I'm kinda in the same boat as you, an usuba is the only single-bevel knife I think I'd ever use, I have a suji with an 80/20 grind so I don't think I'd need a yanagi

cclin
02-24-2013, 04:57 PM
Mmmm....deba for pumpkin/chicken/duck/Crab??:dontknow: Why??? a Chinese cleaver can do all those things with much cheaper price & more easy to maintain!!

Patatas Bravas
02-24-2013, 05:03 PM
Fish, chicken and duck.
I work with Asian food so no pumpkin here.

When I used to do pumpkin in the past I have a wusthof culinar 240mm that I only ever used with pumpkin.
Too heavy really to use for much else, one swipe and it was cut in two.

Yes, if I had a big German knife than I am fine I think. Anyway, so I use the deba - very thick, but at least it is not going to break in two pieces on hard shell.

Disagree about the pumpkin - lots of pumpkins in Asian cuisine. Curries, puddings, Japanese and Korean foods....

Benuser
02-24-2013, 05:03 PM
Or any soft European chef knife...

Patatas Bravas
02-24-2013, 05:15 PM
TYes, the chinese cleaver is a very good idea. You mean I must buy another knife? Again?

For the members that have a single-bevel usuba, how do you find they are cutting on hard vegs? I think they must wedge terribly and are made for dicing.

ThEoRy
02-24-2013, 05:15 PM
This thread is the very reason I bought a Tojiro 240mm Yo-Deba. So I can beat the **** out of it and not care.

ThEoRy
02-24-2013, 05:16 PM
TYes, the chinese cleaver is a very good idea. You mean I must buy another knife? Again?

For the members that have a single-bevel usuba, how do you find they are cutting on hard vegs? I think they must wedge terribly and are made for dicing.

I think a carrot or daikon is the hardest veg I would cut with usuba probably. So far so good.

Patatas Bravas
02-24-2013, 05:21 PM
I think a carrot or daikon is the hardest veg I would cut with usuba probably. So far so good.

And you mean 1-bevel or kamagata?

maxim
02-24-2013, 05:45 PM
I use my 150mm for chicken, fish some heavy bones, sometime garlic :D
But it is very cheap one i have, i will never use my bigger Shig on chicken or other bones

Zwiefel
02-24-2013, 06:11 PM
And you mean 1-bevel or kamagata?

Kamagata isn't 1-bevel?

stevenStefano
02-24-2013, 06:16 PM
Kamagata isn't 1-bevel?

Yes it is. I have one that I don't use that much but it worked great on any veg I tried, even the hard ones

ThEoRy
02-24-2013, 06:27 PM
And you mean 1-bevel or kamagata?

Kamagata Usuba is a single bevel with the pointy tip.

GlassEye
02-24-2013, 06:46 PM
My deba has been used for fish only, except the one time I cut a piece of bread with it, which worked really well. I would use my gyuto for a pumpkin probably.

Patatas Bravas
02-24-2013, 06:58 PM
Kamagata Usuba is a single bevel with the pointy tip.

Oh, it was my mistake. I meant the Eastern Japan azumagata type vs the kamagata Western Japan type. Sorry for confusion.

shaneg
02-24-2013, 07:16 PM
Yes, if I had a big German knife than I am fine I think. Anyway, so I use the deba - very thick, but at least it is not going to break in two pieces on hard shell.

Disagree about the pumpkin - lots of pumpkins in Asian cuisine. Curries, puddings, Japanese and Korean foods....
I'm mainly talking about crown pumpkin, thats pretty much all they sell here, in thailand they do have fak thong, which is kabocha in Japan, but it's a squash and was introduced.

Pensacola Tiger
02-24-2013, 07:23 PM
I used mine on a melon, just to see what it would do. Only fish since then. If you want a heavy knife for bones, get a Western deba.

Rick

JMac
02-24-2013, 08:03 PM
My deba is only for fish. I really dont understand how you would benefit cutting a chicken, duck, goose what ever with a deba.

cclin
02-24-2013, 09:42 PM
My deba is only for fish. I really dont understand how you would benefit cutting a chicken, duck, goose what ever with a deba.

yap!! that exactly what I'm thinking about!!???:scratchhead:????

MrDelicious
02-24-2013, 09:59 PM
I really wanted a Deba because they just look so cool. For cutting thru chicken bones and turkey bones.
From what I read, this type of knife chips easily when hacking thru chicken and turkey bones so I decided against it.

I'm now using an old 6" Henkles Chef's knife that I stopped using for everyday chopping.
I'm not sure what the best knife is for this task (spatchcocking a chicken/turkey) but I do it regularly.

playford
02-24-2013, 10:01 PM
This thread is the very reason I bought a Tojiro 240mm Yo-Deba. So I can beat the **** out of it and not care.

I have the 210mm, superb.

ThEoRy
02-24-2013, 10:09 PM
I really wanted a Deba because they just look so cool. For cutting thru chicken bones and turkey bones.
From what I read, this type of knife chips easily when hacking thru chicken and turkey bones so I decided against it.

I'm now using an old 6" Henkles Chef's knife that I stopped using for everyday chopping.
I'm not sure what the best knife is for this task (spatchcocking a chicken/turkey) but I do it regularly.


http://youtu.be/urIeUid1TMo

JKerr
02-24-2013, 10:56 PM
Only fish with my current deba and a few ducks when I had a 210 mioroshi; the ducks were really out of curiosity though. It did the job well enough, but I can do the same task quicker and probably better with a victorinox paring knife. Yeah, you can use a deba for pretty much anything, just as you could use a yanagi to split cabbage and dice butter; but why would you want to? Other than the fact they're just cool to use. :D

Cheers,
Josh

phan1
02-25-2013, 12:06 AM
Deba is much more versatile than one would typically think. Its great for tartar and mincing herbs for example. And since it's a traditional, one-sided knife, it's sharper than your typical gyuto.

bieniek
02-25-2013, 12:11 AM
I must apologize already.

But *** is most of the BS here about? Patronizing? Zen-ning?
How can any of you/us no samurai, no swordmaker, no knifemaker, not even a real japanese with 6 years washing rice experience talk shite about whats what meant to do?
Forums experts.

Yeah, so I have 3 debas, wouldnt have any problem cutting pumpkin with it, or a chicken for that matter. To say it is the right tool for the job? No it is not but if you or you think its good for chicken, then thats truth for you. And its nobody elses business.

I tried chicken, a few and that actually went quite bad cause the knife feels to heavy and is too big definitely can do the job better with paring knife?
I mean, if you about to break the joint and need two hands, you have to put it down and pick up again just a clunky piece of gear for that[talking 21cm blade]. imho.
But haha try to cut out the oysters with cleaver... yeah, for sure goes well.

Never tried pumpkin cause have better knives to handle pukpkin the way I like. It can go nice with a bread knife, if theres one hanging around.

But I did slicing of onions, spring onions, lemons - that is very cool actually. I wedged through many carrots - again not the tool for the job but so I guess its time to be honest and realize they dont want me in Japan.

Oh ducks? Both raw and cooked. Trimming of breast is a pleasure if you like soooo much weight in your hand. Cooked duck sliced in half lengthwise to remove ribcage? There ya go!!

So yeah knife for fish mostly for me, but also for experimenting what it could work with.

Oh forgot to mention opened many beer bottles with the top of the right side. Now that it was made for.
I tried to use my Sandokans Sword for that but unfortunately almost took out an eye of the wife who was standing two metres away!

Patatas Bravas
02-25-2013, 01:34 AM
Be careful, Bienek. I think you broke so many knife rules maybe you can be arrested. Yes, maybe they can never let you enter into Japan.

Okay, now forget the fish. I will try my deba on everthing else.

panda
02-25-2013, 02:28 AM
there is no right or wrong use for a knife, its what ever you use it for at the moment... personally i find deba pointless, hate cleavers and nakiris too, i rather use a gyuto.

ecchef
02-25-2013, 02:31 AM
Fish only. Not that I couldn't use it for other things, I just don't like it for anything else. Have a bunch of other stuff for that.

eshua
02-25-2013, 03:05 AM
I have a 50/50 carter deba, a little aji knife, one giant cheap 240 beater deba, 180 shun, and a few times I borrow some sabun deba from another guy on sushi bar. I've played with using them on lots of different things, but for me its only an upgrade to use on fish.

Furthermore, the better quality harder ones will chip more, and I've already started to see how easy I can chip the 2 doi yanagi I have. As a guy who has washed rice for 6 years and is cleaning fish more now ... I would maybe go further and say that for a very good deba you only use only on fish, AND make sure you do it well. I see some guys on sushi bar who can work very fast, but upgrade to nicer knives and chips everywhere because they work drunk or careless.

Most of you know better than me, so this is just my guess. Maybe I trick someone into bst a good deal on nice deba LoL.

bieniek
02-25-2013, 11:47 AM
The question in the thread was clear: be honest what you are using/used your deba on.

Me myself am a man who uses nailbrush and srcub knives and uses bleach on cutting board between jobs and would love to wash rice for six years [maybe in some other life] and at work I use my knives thoughtfully and geenrally as intended. However at home, when freshly sharpened, such knife can be used in many ways :bigeek:

But saying that who here uses sujihiki just for slicing?
Do you have sushikiri for maki rolls? I think actually in every place Ive been chef used his yanagi/suji for that.

eshua
02-25-2013, 07:26 PM
Sushikiri I was always told was only for futomaki which we only make for friends and very good customer.

I wasn't trying to jump on the purist wagon, just saying as I've definitely tried using deba for poultry and other things I stopped over time because I didn't enjoy it. Although, I do like to dock shrimp tails for tempura with my little one... so there that exception.

ThEoRy
02-25-2013, 07:48 PM
Duck with Mioroshi.


http://youtu.be/KCh5HwuOFwU

slowtyper
02-26-2013, 02:44 AM
I've used a deba for a chicken once or twice...its not really a good knife for that job at all IMO. Now, I only use deba for fish. I don't see how it would really do a good job on hard veg like pumpkin....I don't think it would be that easy to get precise cuts with a deba on that product.

Deckhand
02-26-2013, 03:14 PM
My Kanasaki deba in my avatar is specifically designed for crab and shellfish. So it isn't a random deba use on my Crab. I was lucky enough to buy it a while back from Bishamon. Just thought I would throw that out there.

pete84
03-01-2013, 03:45 AM
If you want to use deba on a pumpkin, why not?

Ive been a professional cook and sushi chef for almost a decade and I can tell you that ive seen people slice beautifully thin green onion with a deba. And wreck them with sharp gyutos. If you find the knife works for what you need and the technique works and doesnt damage your knife or product... who cares?

Rock on!

Jmadams13
03-01-2013, 11:20 AM
+1. As an example, I use my suji to carve big veg and fruit, and a little French super skinny paring to debone squab and small poultry. As long as your comftorable, and the knife isn't getting damaged (but really it's your knife, so if your okay with that, so be it) do what you gotta do

FaInPl
03-02-2013, 02:54 PM
you should use a bread knife for the pumpkin the deba i think is too thick to really be of good use for the pumpkin...but enjoy

Patatas Bravas
03-02-2013, 03:02 PM
you should use a bread knife for the pumpkin the deba i think is too thick to really be of good use for the pumpkin...but enjoy

Yes, another good idea, thanks, and yes a deba is too thick. However, I don't have a bread knife and somehow a deba is still more fun don't you think?

Besides... I always thought that we should only use bread knives for bread. I don't want to make new trouble again.

chinacats
03-02-2013, 05:11 PM
Bread knives are for the drawer when guests visit, a gyuto will cut bread and pumkins just fine.

GlassEye
03-02-2013, 07:41 PM
Besides... I always thought that we should only use bread knives for bread. I don't want to make new trouble again.

Agreed, bread knife for bread only, and only the breads that non-serrated blades wont work as well on.

Patatas Bravas
03-03-2013, 11:33 AM
... And paring knives only for pears.

bieniek
03-03-2013, 01:48 PM
Agreed, bread knife for bread only, and only the breads that non-serrated blades wont work as well on.

Theres no way you could use any valuable chef knife on the sourdough Im baking. But from what Ive eaten the SF sourdough wouldt be a tough nut to crack for a top japanese knife too.

And I've seen people cutting sushi rolls with wiktorinoks. hell yeah.