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View Full Version : Knife set up for carving "crusty" meats



mzer
08-06-2013, 11:12 AM
In selecting and sharpening a suji to deal with the problem of crusty meats and crisp skins, what do you guys do. There is clearly a tension between the desire to cut meat as cleanly as possible leaving beautiful fibers on the inside while also being able to quickly penetrate the crisp crust of steak or delicate crackly skin. This isn't dissimilar to the issue with tomatoes where you have such a different texture between papery skin and delicate meat. What are some strategies you guys have tried, or am I the only one who has noticed it?

tk59
08-06-2013, 11:22 AM
I've been using a Devin 300 mm suji in SWR. I sharpen it on the 400 Gesshin and then strop on diamond. It works great but I do get some chipping occasionally, as Chuck so kindly pointed out to me at the WCG. :curse:

bkdc
08-06-2013, 11:40 AM
If this is a common problem, get an 'relatively' inexpensive suji and sharpen it with a coarse grit. Everything tk59 said, but with a much less expensive knife. Like a Carbonext 300mm suji. I encounter this problem when I have to slice tuna which with seared crust.

Benuser
08-06-2013, 12:08 PM
I sharpen my Fujiwara FKH 270 on a Chosera 800 (about J1200), and strop on split leather.

Dusty
08-06-2013, 03:41 PM
I usually sharpen my carbonext suji, finishing on a red aoto, or a 5k rika, as I use it as a Line knife, but I keep a cheap ikea ceramic rod in my kit to put some emergency teeth on it when it need to cut through some bark. Four passes on the rod on top of a relatively refined edge works very well. I think my rod is about 800 grit but I'm not certain.

Jim
08-06-2013, 05:28 PM
This is a big problem for the BBQ guys with the brisket. I fooled around with various combos and settled on a 1000/1200 grit finish with aggressive stropping on cowhide to finish as the best compromise. During competitions I have cut the bark and then finished the slice with another knife. I don't know if it psychological but it seems to be the best scenario.

kungpao
08-07-2013, 12:00 AM
This is a big problem for the BBQ guys with the brisket. I fooled around with various combos and settled on a 1000/1200 grit finish with aggressive stropping on cowhide to finish as the best compromise. During competitions I have cut the bark and then finished the slice with another knife. I don't know if it psychological but it seems to be the best scenario.

I've always wondered if competition BBQ scene had love for j-knives. I see cheap serrated or electric knives on tv.

ChuckTheButcher
08-07-2013, 12:55 AM
This is a big problem for the BBQ guys with the brisket. I fooled around with various combos and settled on a 1000/1200 grit finish with aggressive stropping on cowhide to finish as the best compromise. During competitions I have cut the bark and then finished the slice with another knife. I don't know if it psychological but it seems to be the best scenario.

That's good to know. I just bought a smoker somehow got tricked into doing BBQ catering on the side. It is tearing up my knives.

stopbarking
08-07-2013, 02:17 AM
I've tried every knife in my kit for this on a carving station but I go back to my Tojiro bread knife every time. Works perfectly if you baby the bark one backwards then forwards and ending with one long stroke backwards to finish the cut. If you strop the flat side and finish the whole non-bark cut with one stroke there are no striations from the serrations. Same with any kind of wellington be it beef or salmon. Use the knife's curvature to your favor.

I've tried some pretty sweet sujis for this purpose but I'd rather use the Tojiro than using a suji "sharpened down" for this purpose.

Chefdog
08-07-2013, 09:32 AM
I've tried every knife in my kit for this on a carving station but I go back to my Tojiro bread knife every time. Works perfectly if you baby the bark one backwards then forwards and ending with one long stroke backwards to finish the cut. If you strop the flat side and finish the whole non-bark cut with one stroke there are no striations from the serrations. Same with any kind of wellington be it beef or salmon. Use the knife's curvature to your favor.

I've tried some pretty sweet sujis for this purpose but I'd rather use the Tojiro than using a suji "sharpened down" for this purpose.

+1 The tojiro ITK works very well for crusty stuff, whether a brisket, roast, or delicate breaded items. The reversed "teeth" make breaking through the crust a breeze while minimizing the tearing effect that makes a traditional serrated knife a terrible choice for slicing proteins.
IMHO, YMMV, etc.

daveb
08-07-2013, 06:56 PM
I know a few guys that compete on the BBQ circuit. They all use electric knives for slicing. I kinda sorta of tried one once. Briefly. It's like riding a moped - can be fun but don't let your friends see you doing it.

aser
08-09-2013, 02:56 AM
I have to cut these bone on shortribs at work. They're sous vide for 48 hrs, then finished off in the fryer. The crust really puts a hurting on my slicer. Nothing baller, it's just a Kanemasa e series 300mm.

I've been sharpening it normal, all the way up to a arashiyama 6000 + leather strop. I think I should just stop at bester 1200 after going through this thread.