PDA

View Full Version : Do I need a bread knife? If so, which one? Tojiro?



heirkb
02-12-2012, 08:55 PM
So I looked at the bread knife threads around here. I saw a post by tk59 that he uses a suji 95% of the time to cut bread. Do the rest of you guys only use a plain edge knife (as opposed to serrated/scalloped knife)? I have a tough time getting my gyuto to easily bite into anything that is even slightly crusty (i.e. anything more crusty than soft sandwich type bread).

I'm looking at the Tojiro bread knife and wondering if I should put that same amount or a little more into a suji or if the bread knife would be the better choice for now until I decide I need a suji for slicing meat.

Also, if I do go with the Tojiro, would it be crazy to think that I could rehandle it myself? I don't have a belt sander or things like that, so it'd have to be files, a few small saws, sandpaper, etc...

mc2442
02-12-2012, 09:08 PM
I got the Tojiro ITK bread knife for Christmas and am very happy with it so far. Glides through crusty bread.

kalaeb
02-12-2012, 09:13 PM
I use a suji most the time, and if you were torn between a suji or a bread knife, get the suji.

If you have some spare funds the Tojiro bread knife is a good knife, but completely non necessary.

Mike Davis
02-12-2012, 09:34 PM
I have been using a 270 laser gyuto to cut bread....I have had amazing luck with it and crusty bread.

dschonbrun
02-12-2012, 09:49 PM
I think it's a good idea to have a long serrated blade in your basic kit. You can use it for large and small breads and crusty fruits and veggies.

Some breads come in quite large/wide loaves, like a Miche, or large Challah. If you have a reasonable kitchen surface, go with a 9 or 10 inch bread knife over an 8 inch. The length allows you to focus on the carve/slice, rather than the downward pressure. It also facilitates less strokes to get through the bread, causing less damage.

heirkb
02-12-2012, 09:53 PM
Any ideas why my edges might not be biting into the bread? I know I'm not great at sharpening, but the edges work fine for most other things.

Also, if I get a suji, 270mm or 300mm? Is there any reason to go smaller other than cost?

dschonbrun
02-12-2012, 09:55 PM
I think it's a good idea to have a long serrated blade in your basic kit. You can use it for large and small breads and crusty fruits and veggies.

Some breads come in quite large/wide loaves, like a Miche, or large Challah. If you have a reasonable kitchen surface, go with a 9 or 10 inch bread knife over an 8 inch. The length allows you to focus on the carve/slice, rather than the downward pressure. It also facilitates less strokes to get through the bread, causing less damage.

As for which one?... there are many options. Please give us an idea of your budget and current knives and people can make recommendations.

Deckhand
02-12-2012, 09:58 PM
Finally, I got my tojiro itk bread knife on Friday. No regrets. This one is a definite keeper for me.

heirkb
02-12-2012, 10:01 PM
As for which one?... there are many options. Please give us an idea of your budget and current knives and people can make recommendations.

Current knives: 270mm Heiji gyuto, 210mm Heiji sujihiki, 80mm Suisin parer.

If I'm getting a bread knife, I wouldn't want it to cost much more than the Tojiro unless it's significantly better.

For sujis, my budget is bigger...let's say best I can get for around $150-200. I don't want to spend more, because I really don't slice a ton of meat. I barely do. It'd be nice for butternut squash and things like that, though. I kinda wanna buy the Suisin Inox just because I like my 80mm parer and Jon's shop, but I don't know if there are better options for the price.

Justin0505
02-12-2012, 10:02 PM
I also really like the ITK tojiro bread knife. I don't use it nearly as much as Eamon (aka sandwich machine), but it does do a better job with bread, cake, baked goods than a straight edged blade. The scallops also cut without the tearing/crumbing of product or gouging of board that the normal "pointy"serrations are known for.
The handle is perfectly fine as is, but I also wouldn't see a regardle project being all that difficult / more difficult than any other knife.

However if you stick with the gyuto, a lower grit/toothy edge helps, and using the point of the tip or heel to puncture the crust and start the cut works well on crusty bread.

tk59
02-12-2012, 10:07 PM
I like having a bread knife. I have the Tojiro but the MAC or even Forschner works just fine. I rarely use them but sometimes they do just work better. Suji... That's a tough one. Suisin is good though because of the wear resistance. Otherwise, I'd go with something in a carbon steel. Unless it's an all arounder, I really like carbon for sujis. It doesn't even have to be an expensive (read Hitachi) steel, either 'cause you don't have to worry about reactivity. Maybe Fujiwara?

heirkb
02-12-2012, 10:09 PM
The reason I have to get another knife either way is that the gyuto gets mini chips when cutting bread. I talked to Jon about it and he said that Heiji knives have harder steel, so you have to sharpen them at a more obtuse angle to cut things like crusty bread. I want to leave the edge acute since it cuts everything else just fine.

heirkb
02-12-2012, 10:11 PM
I like having a bread knife. I have the Tojiro but the MAC or even Forschner works just fine. I rarely use them but sometimes they do just work better. Suji... That's a tough one. Suisin is good though because of the wear resistance. Otherwise, I'd go with something in a carbon steel. Unless it's an all arounder, I really like carbon for sujis. It doesn't even have to be an expensive (read Hitachi) steel, either 'cause you don't have to worry about reactivity. Maybe Fujiwara?

You mean the Fujiwara carbons? I've heard they're super stinky, but would they be that way with meat, too?

tk59
02-12-2012, 10:12 PM
Then I'd go with Ashi. Not the Gesshin Ginga. The regular 58 hrc Ashi steel is very tough.

ajhuff
02-12-2012, 10:13 PM
My chef. Knives seem to cut bread with zero issues. I do have a serrated "bread knife". It's one of thoseas seen on TV type cuts through cans bricks and filet mignonette with ease and never needs sharpening. Gift fromky dad, I thinking costs. $25 for 2. AWESOME bread knife, especially on bagels.

-AJ

tk59
02-12-2012, 10:14 PM
You mean the Fujiwara carbons? I've heard they're super stinky, but would they be that way with meat, too?Fujiwaras shouldn't react with meat, really. Just don't cut an onion with it! ...or a mango... or...

NO ChoP!
02-12-2012, 10:16 PM
I recently retired my Mac bread after many years of service. I replaced it with the ITK simply because it was less money and was touted as the best of all time.... don't think it was any better than the Mac, but good performer none the less....

GlassEye
02-12-2012, 10:28 PM
I vote for the bread knife. I use the 14" Victorinox, works great for those larger loaves of good crusty breads and has done really well for splitting cakes into layers. The Tojiro seems well loved around here; I will probably get one of those as well at some point. You could just get the suji next week.

heirkb
02-12-2012, 10:40 PM
There are some votes both ways and I'm finding myself leaning just a little more towards a suji since it seems more versatile. You guys sure they work well for bread? I guess the skepticism is from my current knives not feeling as bite-y as I like.

Somehow in my mind the jump from the $80 Fujiwara to the $150 Suisin is fine, but the jump from the Suisin to the $220 Ashi/Konosuke White/Sakai Yusuke white seems a bit big.

Deckhand
02-12-2012, 10:47 PM
I vote for the bread knife. I use the 14" Victorinox, works great for those larger loaves of good crusty breads and has done really well for splitting cakes into layers. The Tojiro seems well loved around here; I will probably get one of those as well at some point. You could just get the suji next week.
Scary mind reading ability. That is my plan for next week:biggrin:
Although, the Pierre Rodrigue knives and the Devin Thomas feather pattern knives are killing me.

tkern
02-12-2012, 10:54 PM
The thought of slicing some crusty loaves with my gyuto or suj. makes my skin crawl.






Edit: Coincidentally "Crusty Loaves" was a name I used to dance under.

heirkb
02-12-2012, 10:56 PM
The thought of slicing some crusty loaves with my gyuto or suj. makes my skin crawl.

Well, my Shig used to be able to cut pretty tough baguettes without chipping, but it didn't have a great bite, either.

Johnny.B.Good
02-12-2012, 10:58 PM
The thought of slicing some crusty loaves with my gyuto or suj. makes my skin crawl.

Me too.

I would spend the $60 on the Tojiro, which everyone agrees does a superb job on crusty loaves of bread (and other things).

Edit: Particularly since you keep saying you want the blade to "bite." Get the bread knife and then save up for a suji.

heirkb
02-12-2012, 11:04 PM
Alright you guys are killing me. Enablers. I'll just get the suji for now and get a bread knife next week if I'm not totally crazy with how the suji cuts bread. Only thing is that next week may be a month.

Dave Martell
02-12-2012, 11:04 PM
I have 2 - MAC for soft bread and Gude for hard crust

WildBoar
02-12-2012, 11:35 PM
Bought an ITK Tojiro for my wife for Christmas -- I like it a lot better then the Wusthoff bread knife we've been using. We cut crusty bread pretty much on a daily basis. The Tojiro cuts with very little downward pressure, so less crushing of the bread.

mr drinky
02-12-2012, 11:43 PM
My Forschner works just fine and is cheap. It is probably the least used knife in my drawer though, but for crusty bread it always comes out. Whatever knife you choose, it will show your cutting board who is boss. Whenever I use my bread knife I use it on my bamboo board.

k.

AFKitchenknivesguy
02-12-2012, 11:50 PM
To me, it's like a nonstick pan. Buy a cheap serated bread knife and replace it when it doesn't work like it used to.

NO ChoP!
02-12-2012, 11:56 PM
Whatever knife you choose, it will show your cutting board who is boss. Whenever I use my bread knife I use it on my bamboo board.

k.
Smart man..... big +1

Justin0505
02-13-2012, 12:12 AM
I can understand the thinking behind not buying a dedicated bread knife because you don't go though that many baked goods and you don't want a dedicated knife just for that.

However, I really don't understand the idea of buying a cheap piece junk that performs like $#|t even when it's new, you can't sharpen, and is ultimately destined for the trash... ESPECIALLY when there is something infinitely better available for $60.

I would actually pay more for one that was a bit thicker and longer (that's what she said). The Gude looks soooo bada$$, but I really like the scalloped edge better and I don't know if there is even an importer of Gudes in the US anymore. Dave?

Anyone know of a Gude-like bread knife w/ scalloped (aka non-pointy / board shredy) edge that's available in the US?

Justin0505
02-13-2012, 12:13 AM
My Forschner works just fine and is cheap. It is probably the least used knife in my drawer though, but for crusty bread it always comes out. Whatever knife you choose, it will show your cutting board who is boss. Whenever I use my bread knife I use it on my bamboo board.

k.

that wouldnt be an issue if you got a tojiro with nice scalloped edge :)

Dave Martell
02-13-2012, 12:21 AM
F Dick?

Eamon Burke
02-13-2012, 12:22 AM
My Tojiro ITK bread knife got a chip or two in in it and it's a hell of a pain to fix.

But it's still pretty solid. I'd love to try one of those giant Gude ones like Dave has.

Eamon Burke
02-13-2012, 12:23 AM
F Dick?

Come on, Dave, we're all friends here.

Dave Martell
02-13-2012, 12:30 AM
that wouldnt be an issue if you got a tojiro with nice scalloped edge :)

Well the Tojiro is more of a rounded/dull tooth than scalloped. I think MAC when I think scalloped.

Deckhand
02-13-2012, 01:30 AM
If I eventually get another one it will be a misono 360mm. Can never have too many knives.:biggrin:

geezr
02-13-2012, 01:31 AM
I can understand the thinking behind not buying a dedicated bread knife because you don't go though that many baked goods and you don't want a dedicated knife just for that.

However, I really don't understand the idea of buying a cheap piece junk that performs like $#|t even when it's new, you can't sharpen, and is ultimately destined for the trash... ESPECIALLY when there is something infinitely better available for $60.

I would actually pay more for one that was a bit thicker and longer (that's what she said). The Gude looks soooo bada$$, but I really like the scalloped edge better and I don't know if there is even an importer of Gudes in the US anymore. Dave?

Anyone know of a Gude-like bread knife w/ scalloped (aka non-pointy / board shredy) edge that's available in the US?

Google searched for the Gude bread knife and found what seems to be a site in the UK showing the Gude bread knife with the long blade - it is out of stock. Lehman has one with an 8" blade.
Any one know of and can provide link(s) where the long bladed Gude bread knife is currently available to be purchased?

Johnny.B.Good
02-13-2012, 01:39 AM
If I eventually get another one it will be a misono 360mm. Can never have too many knives.:biggrin:

I have been looking at the 300mm Misono on the JCK website.

My short Wusthof needs to go.

Deckhand
02-13-2012, 01:48 AM
I have been looking at the 300mm Misono on the JCK website.

My short Wusthof needs to go.

The one I mentioned Salty said to get if you want a real treat on one of his old blog posts.

Johnny.B.Good
02-13-2012, 01:56 AM
Funny, I started to focus on the Misono after seeing a picture of it in Salty's kit (didn't know whether it was the 300mm or 360mm). The Tojiro looks pretty good though.

Deckhand
02-13-2012, 02:11 AM
Funny, I started to focus on the Misono after seeing a picture of it in Salty's kit (didn't know whether it was the 300mm or 360mm). The Tojiro looks pretty good though.

Salty's is 360mm. I absolutely love my Tojiro ITK. I am using it for bread, pineapples, mango, watermelon,etc. Saw the you tube video and had to have it. Around $50.00 and free shipping hard to beat.

Justin0505
02-13-2012, 02:37 AM
Well the Tojiro is more of a rounded/dull tooth than scalloped. I think MAC when I think scalloped.

Yeah. I see what you mean. I guess "round tooth" is a better description than "scalloped."

Still, I haven't really seen anyone else make a bread knife with this type of non-pointy serration.

It looks like the Shun Kramer's have smaller, rounded teeth (http://www.surlatable.com/product/PRO-603191/Shun-Bob-Kramer-Bread-Knife), but those seem like they'd be even harder to maintain.... plus making a bread knife out of sg2(aka the chippiest steel I've used) just seems like a bad idea... plus it's only 10", plus it's $320.... ok moving on.

Tristan
02-13-2012, 04:33 AM
To me, it's like a nonstick pan. Buy a cheap serated bread knife and replace it when it doesn't work like it used to.

I slice bread with my gyuto. But when I absolutely have to, I use a $12 bread knife. Just because it looks hungry and unfed. Never had problems with micro-chips from the gyuto. Perhaps my bread isn't all that crusty.

The peasant breads get to meet the $12 bread knife.

ThEoRy
02-13-2012, 06:06 PM
Salty's is 360mm. I absolutely love my Tojiro ITK. I am using it for bread, pineapples, mango, watermelon,etc. Saw the you tube video and had to have it. Around $50.00 and free shipping hard to beat.

Hahaha, that would be my fault lol.
:D

Johnny.B.Good
02-13-2012, 06:32 PM
Hahaha, that would be my fault lol.

I like this one too. ;)

You pros are so efficient. It's fun to watch you just rip through huge amounts of prep in real time.

Deckhand
02-13-2012, 06:57 PM
Hahaha, that would be my fault lol.
:D
Excuse my noobieness. Are you the PCC kitchen guy?

Johnny.B.Good
02-13-2012, 07:17 PM
Are you the PCC kitchen guy?

That's him alright. ;)

Deckhand
02-13-2012, 07:31 PM
That's him alright. ;)
Amazing skills and good music:biggrin:

add
02-13-2012, 08:28 PM
Besides the breads and hard baguettes, my Shun bread knife comes out for carving the roasts/hams with the serious crusty seasoning char... :cool2:

ajhuff
02-13-2012, 09:41 PM
To me, it's like a nonstick pan. Buy a cheap serated bread knife and replace it when it doesn't work like it used to.

I agree. Though I think I have had this knife 15 years and it still does a great job. My dad bought it for me as a tomato knife but I use it almost exclusively as a bread knife. Reminds me of a saw blade I used to use to cut iron castings. I suppose it I really wanted to I could follow Dave's method for sharpening serrated blades, but it still cuts great so no real need. I'd actually love to find another one!

http://s14.postimage.org/gn0ebqggt/knife.jpg (http://postimage.org/image/gn0ebqggt/)

-AJ

Deckhand
02-14-2012, 06:47 PM
I agree. Though I think I have had this knife 15 years and it still does a great job. My dad bought it for me as a tomato knife but I use it almost exclusively as a bread knife. Reminds me of a saw blade I used to use to cut iron castings. I suppose it I really wanted to I could follow Dave's method for sharpening serrated blades, but it still cuts great so no real need. I'd actually love to find another one!

http://s14.postimage.org/gn0ebqggt/knife.jpg (http://postimage.org/image/gn0ebqggt/)

-AJ

Looks like it would do a good job and I like the fish.

ThEoRy
02-14-2012, 09:38 PM
http://s14.postimage.org/gn0ebqggt/knife.jpg (http://postimage.org/image/gn0ebqggt/)

-AJ

Hey I had one of those growing up. My mom called it a sausage knife. She used it on tomatoes too. Sandwiches etc.

Tatletz
02-15-2012, 12:53 AM
To me, it's like a nonstick pan. Buy a cheap serated bread knife and replace it when it doesn't work like it used to.


Agree with you on the bread knife part(have different opinion for the nonstick pan), I personally use Shogun bread knife for the past 15 years and it's still cutting well. This is an extract from another forum regarding serrated knives:

"Another not so well known fact... a $200 serrated knife will typically cut as well as a $25 serrated knife. Due to the nature of a serrated edge, you are actually kind of 'tearing' what you are cutting, you are not counting on the quality of steel to be very sharp. So, unless you get a free Henckels bread knife with your Henckels chef knife purchase, I'd suggest spending much less money on your serrated knives as you would on your chef knives."

Justin0505
02-15-2012, 01:12 AM
"Another not so well known fact... a $200 serrated knife will typically cut as well as a $25 serrated knife. Due to the nature of a serrated edge, you are actually kind of 'tearing' what you are cutting, you are not counting on the quality of steel to be very sharp. So, unless you get a free Henckels bread knife with your Henckels chef knife purchase, I'd suggest spending much less money on your serrated knives as you would on your chef knives."

I used to think the same thing, and I was wrong. I don't know much about a $200 bread knife, but after spending a few month with the Tojiro ITK (which I think I paid $40 for, and now sells for $60), I was over at a friends and used his "miracle blade" slicer on some par-baked bread.... ugh, it was like cutting with an old band-saw blade. I've also used Henk's and Wusty's bread saws, and while I don't like the "pointy" serrations, the steel is good enough that you can sharpen them to the point where they cut more than rip.

Eamon Burke
02-15-2012, 07:31 PM
There is truth in both of those assessments. The point of a serration is not supposed to be to ripsaw your way through the food, but to increase the length of the cutting edge and prevent most of it from every hitting the board(the primary source of dulling). Unfortunately, as standards dropped in the modern age, companies and consumers settled for food saws. Real serrated blades, with effective cutting edges and sharpenable teeth, are coming back.

Justin0505
02-16-2012, 05:31 PM
serrated blades, with effective cutting edges and sharpenable teeth, are coming back.

Is that a hint to a future offering from Burke Cutlery?
Where do I sign up for the Burke Bread Knife(BBK) #1?

I'm not joking.

Eamon Burke
02-17-2012, 12:44 AM
Oy. Maybe. I'll think about it. But that doesn't sound like fun.

Tatletz
02-22-2012, 02:36 AM
There is a rather interesting sale offering from one of the cutlery shops regarding Zwilling J A Henckels. If you want a bread knife it will cost you $104, and a cooks one $126, but they have a set of both for $84. Interesting marketing strategy!?

Tristan
02-22-2012, 10:23 PM
That's how I got my Henckels twin set too... two knives were cheaper than one. I think their strategy was colonisation. Clog up your knife block so no competitors settle in. G.Steel all the way...

mr drinky
02-22-2012, 11:56 PM
I was trolling around a German site after a link in another thread, and this Schanz bread knife looks cool -- but it is 180 Euro. Scalloping aside, I think it has a sleek look. That one is screaming for a Dave rehandle to make it look extra sexy.

k.

Dave Martell
02-23-2012, 12:26 AM
I was trolling around a German site after a link in another thread, and this Schanz bread knife looks cool -- but it is 180 Euro. Scalloping aside, I think it has a sleek look. That one is screaming for a Dave rehandle to make it look extra sexy.

k.


Ooooo.....how big is that?

BTW, the German sites always have the best bread knives. :)

mr drinky
02-23-2012, 12:35 AM
These are the specs (in German)

Stahl : 1.2552
Klingenstärke : 2,8mm
Klingenlänge : 280mm
Gesamtlänge : 395mm
Griffmaterial : Papiermicarta
HRC 60

Basispreis mit Micarta € 180.-

So it is only 11 inches on the blade I think, and 15.5 overall.

k.

Dave Martell
02-23-2012, 12:32 PM
Looks like standard length but kind of short for a monster bread knife.

Tatletz
02-24-2012, 04:02 AM
That's how I got my Henckels twin set too... two knives were cheaper than one. I think their strategy was colonisation. Clog up your knife block so no competitors settle in. G.Steel all the way...

Yes, I guess you are right. But I must say that my Henckels Chefs knife feels more comfortable in the hand that Kasumi Guyto's one, despite being sharper and beautiful with it's damascus pattern :knife: