Santoku Knives: A cut above the rest
The Santoku knife is a general purpose chef’s knife originally from Japan. The blade of a typical Santoku knife is approximately 5 to 8 inches long. They have a flat edge and what is known as a sheepsfoot blade. The blade essentially curves in at an almost-60 degree angle at its point. At present there are several different brand names associated with Santoku knives. They are Calphalon, Cutco, Wolfgang Puck, Wuesthof and Shun.
The usage of the knife is tied directly to its name. Santoku is Japanese for “three uses” or “three virtues”. The three main uses of the Santoku knife are dicing, mincing and slicing. Design features of this particular knife may vary somewhat on the specific model. However, there are some features they all have in common.
They are shorter, not as heavy and not as wide as Western knives in general. They are also different from classic German knives as well. They all have handles that work in unison with the blade’s weight and the blade’s width. Specifically, the blade’s handle and tang are equivalent to the weight and width of the blade. The Japanese designed this knife to be well-balanced.
Santoku knives are especially efficient with vegetables and are also preferred by people with smaller hands as they are easier to use. Prices of the Santoku knives vary depending on the particular brand, model and, of course, where one purchases the knives. People interested in owning Santoku knives are advised to do their homework just as they should before making any other purchase.
(Images courtesy of SeaCut and Wantanabe)