Cooking with my new knives was really fun, and I think I paid more attention to details - not only for cutting, but also for the way I cook and work around the kitchen. I was more careful about how I stir pots and how much salt I added, etc. I enjoyed cooking so much more. Naturally I ended up having a really good end-result = tasty food !
With my new knives, I was totally ready to cook (okay, this photo was taken last year)!
I know some people are curious to find out what knives I picked...
My new knives are a Gesshin Ginga 240mm White #2 Wa-Gyuto and Gesshin Ginga 150mm Stainless Wa-Petty. If you read my blog post about "My First Sweet Knives", you will see what I was looking for from my new knives. In short, I wanted two knives that were good at multitasking and were skill-level appropriate (or something that I can grow into). Both knives have a great balance of an ease of sharpening and an edge taking ability.
When I picked up these two knives, of course we had to wrap them up, just like every other knife from JKI. I wrapped up my 240mm wa-gyuto, and Jon wrapped the 150mm wa-petty. Here are some photos. I guess the corners are little hard for Jon to make crisp and straight... you can easily tell which one is mine and which one is Jon's. But I greatly appreciated the effort.
Opening up my new knives <3
I prepared 5 main dishes - chin jao rosu, mabo nasu, daigaku imo, spicy and sweet renkon, and goya chample.
Takonoko (bamboo shoot), renkon (lotus root), peppers, egg plants, potatoes, negi, ginger and garlic were really easy to slice as I expected. I was scared a little bit when I learned goya has tough seeds inside But I didn't twist the blade or anything that would create pressure along the edge of the knife, so it was just fine.
My knives are thin and sharp.... really fun to use. I think it's more dangerous to use dull knives and cut food (and more crying happens with dull knives when cutting onions etc). With my new knives, I didn't have to use any force, but rather I could just let knives do their job.
What I was most impressed about was cutting meat. Well, actually I was most impressed by myself. Till yesterday, I had this unspeakable fear of touching raw meat of any kind... If I even look at raw meat too closely, I usually loose my appetite for it. To avoid the raw meat monster, I usually make Jon cut the meat, or buy sliced meat. Yesterday though, I picked up pork and sliced it by myself! I made sure to wet my knives so the meat wouldn't stick to the knife too much. I made 3-4 mm slices. Look! I totally won.
A lot of people hesitate picking up a carbon knife, but I speak from my experience that it's not bad at all. As long as you are aware of acidic foods and make sure you don't leave your knife wet or dirty, it should be pretty easy. You should be working clean in the kitchen anyways (otherwise I'd be concerned about food safety!). In a professional environment, the choices you make will be different depending on your working environment, but for a home cook like myself, I think it's great to take advantage and try carbon steel.
Now I need to sharpen my knives, and this might be the hard part. I have to cut my nails tonight to prepare myself for a hard day!
PS - Having a White #2 (carbon) makes me a proud home cook!