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New Knife (not a gyuto)

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 

I've got a decent Tojiro wa-gyuto, got my sharpening stuff down, thanks mostly to you guys (special thanks to BDL for any and all knowledge I've picked up along the way.)

 

What I'm interested in now is a slicer, mostly for veggies and the like. I'm just confused by the different types and shapes, etc.

 

Like I said, this would mostly be for veggies and lighter use, nothing heavy. Do I want a nakiri? A yanagi? A kiritsuke? A sujihiki? From videos I've seen of each being used, they're used similarly enough, so is it more about the feel/weight distribution?

 

Just curious what you guys like, and why.

post #2 of 13

If you want something light lean towards the nakiri.  Yanagis are thick and single bevel as are usuabas and are more difficult to sharpen and maintain.  A suji is ideal for protein, nori roll, etc. - how about a Chinese chef's cleaver?

post #3 of 13

I'm not sure why you need a slicer for veggies, especially with a gyuto this good.

 

Mostly slicers are for meat and fish. The questions there are complex, certainly, but veggies don't come into it much. One does see Japanese sushi chefs use yanagiba to do some veg work, but there it's a combination of time (not much — high pressure) and immense familiarity with this knife.

 

A nakiri does nothing your gyuto doesn't do better. Same with a santoku. An usuba is a very different kettle of fish, but the overlap with a gyuto is large; functionally, the trade off to having to relearn everything — and an usuba requires that — makes it not a great choice.

 

For meat slicing, the primary difference is sujibiki vs yanagiba, and to my mind the important questions are price and what kinds of meat.

post #4 of 13

As mentioned you can use your gyuto to do most of the same tasks; I have an usuba I use for most of my veg prep and love it. For me the distinct advantage is the profile allowing me to do push cuts much easier and faster, and I'm able to fly through most of my prep with it. My usuba is on the heavier side, so I'm even able to tackle thicker skin veg and fruit like pineapple and gourds.

 

If you're looking for something lighter you could look into nakiris which are easier to find; you can even walk into your local SLT or BB&B and ask to try them out.

 

If you're looking for a slicer comparable to a meat slicer then this all might be moot; the blades on usubas and nakiris aren't as long compared to even standard chef's/gyutos.


Edited by Junglist - 3/12/13 at 1:31pm

'A fool can't act the wise, but the wise can act a fool...' - Kweli

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'A fool can't act the wise, but the wise can act a fool...' - Kweli

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post #5 of 13
Thread Starter 

Yeah, I realize I can use my gyuto for most anything I'm wanting a slicer for, I'd just like to expand my collection and enjoy changing things up with the different styles.

post #6 of 13
Thread Starter 

Thanks so much, everyone, for all the input.

post #7 of 13

Perhaps you'd like to try a super-thin veg. cleaver such as the CCK 1303. An inexpensive way to check out something totally different and IMHO 10x better at veg prep than any other design on the planet.

 

 

post #8 of 13

Nice looking cleaver that . . . thumb.gif

post #9 of 13

Nice looking CCK, Mac!

 

How'd you get that patina?

post #10 of 13

Scrubbed the finish off, then hot vinegar bath for about 8 hours. Then just used it. The patina is not as uniform now, with deep ochre colorings and almost no patina where my thumb hits.

post #11 of 13
Eight hours is a lot. I would rather count in minutes than in hours. Prior to the bath it may be helpful to degrease thoroughly to get a more even result. Rinse with the hottest water you may get.
post #12 of 13

OK.  I'm not arguing with anyone's opinion here (read: ChrisLehrer), but I think nakiris are cool for chopping stuff.  Does it work any better than my chef's knife?  NO.  Does it make me feel cool, and enjoy chopping stuff a little bit more?  YES.  Does it get me looks from snotty punk wiseguys in the kitchen when I pull out a specialty knife?  OH YEAH (that's part of the "cool").  I've got two(2).  The first was a black ceramic Kyocera that I just wanted for buying something sake.  I got the ceramic bug out of my system.  There's nothing wrong with it so much, but I don't recommend it.  My second, the one I use a lot, is the knife from the vid I included below.  It looked cool watching the guy in the vid.  I love the song of the vid.  It's a cool knife to chop stuff with.  On top of that it sharpens easy enough to a scary edge.  It ain'te a beauty contest winner so I don't worry about it getting swiped.  It's cheap enough to not be painful if it did get swiped.

 

Tojiro White #2 Nakiri

 

NO.  I'm not at all in that guy's skill-set zip-code.  Shoot, I'm not even in his area-code.  But I do like the knife. 

post #13 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by IceMan View Post

OK.  I'm not arguing with anyone's opinion here (read: ChrisLehrer), but I think nakiris are cool for chopping stuff.  Does it work any better than my chef's knife?  NO.  Does it make me feel cool, and enjoy chopping stuff a little bit more?  YES.  

 

It's certainly hard to argue with at the price ($49)!  And it is sometimes fun to set aside our all-around-general-purpose-do-everything chef's knives and use something a bit more specialized.  It's easy to see how a knife like that would be great for veg prep. If you can only buy one knife, then yeah... make it a good gyuto/chef's knife.  But once you've got that covered you can consider getting whatever floats your boat. 

 

Truth be told, if we only bought the knives we needed, I doubt if any of us would have more than four or five knives... tops.  But where's the fun in that?... wink.gif


Edited by DaveZatYoWa - 3/22/13 at 3:06am
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