Japanese Kitchen Knife FAQs
About blank blade size
About Single-edged and Double-edged Knives
The single-edged knife was particularly created for Japanese cuisine as a sashimi knife and a pointed carver knife, among others. The sliced food easily slides away from the knife; the food's cross-section is beautifully cut; and the food is also characterized by a pleasant mouth-feel. While the angle wherein the blade hits the food is more acute resulting in a sharp cut compared to a double-edged knife, a single-edged knife has the disadvantage of splintering more easily.
Double-edged knives are sharpened at almost the same angle on both the front (50 degrees) and reverse (50 degrees) sides. Food is sliced straight, and these knives cut evenly on both sides so they can be used by both right-handed and left-handed people.
*Western-style kitchen knives (gyuto, slicers, santoku, petty knives, etc.) are double-edged.
*We also have double-edged knives that are slightly angled for right-handed people.
About Honyaki Knives and Kasumi Knives *ibuki blades are almost kasumi type knife.
A honyaki knife is a kitchen knife made from one sheet of steel. Knives that are not honyaki and are generally available on the market that are called “kasumi” knives have cutting blades that combine hard steel and soft iron as their base material. Kasumi knives are easy to handle, easy to sharpen and are affordable compared to honyaki knives. As a disadvantage, single-edged Japanese kitchen knives curve slightly after many years of use. A curved knife may break if undue pressure is placed on it so we recommend having it repaired in a knife specialty store.
Honyaki knives are harder and are equipped with a durability that allows them to cut for a long time. The uniquely beautiful pattern on a honyaki blade is appealing, and is also reminiscent of a Japanese sword. The blade will not curve after many years of use, but on the other hand, it splinters easily and requires advanced sharpening skills because it is very hard. Moreover, honyaki knives are expensive because the manufacturing process is very time-consuming, and only highly-skilled craftsman can make these knives.
Urasuki” (curved shape)
Knives are structured in various ways but with regard to Japanese knives which are single-edged, their rear parts are formed to have slightly curved surfaces called “urasuki.” The curved surface reduces frictional resistance when cutting ingredients so that they would not easily stick to the knife, and it also creates sharpness.
In addition, urasuki is created by a craftsman because during re-sharpening of the rear surface, the parts that hit the whetstone become small surfaces therefore the knife can be sharpened for just a few number of times, facilitating the knife’s maintenance.