ChefSteps shares terrific tips for honing knives, so they will work well and last a lifetime.
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[MUSIC] Hi, my name's Daniel O'Malley. I'm a bladesmith and
I started making knives back in 1996 and I own
a shop called the Epicurean Edge. Okay, so the goal
of the honing is to be distinct from sharpening, that
is that instead of recreating a new edge We're trying
to straighten the edge that we've got. There's no big
surprise. The edge of the knife is microscopically thin. We're
whacking it against a cutting board and it's gonna bend
over. The goal here is to bring that edge back
to center. We can often feel a bent over edge
if a knife hasn't been honed enough by rubbing your
fingers against the edge or away from the cutting edge.
And if it catches your finger pads, you can feel
that the edge has been rolled over. We're gonna start
with honing, and you'll see a lot of different techniques
for honing. The way that I'm recommending doing is vertically
in front of you. Many times you'll see people hone
down in front like this. Not that you can't do
it this way. It's just unlikely you're gonna do it
correctly. This is all about angle. Sharpening the wrong angle
doesn't work, nor does honing, and so if I can
see the angle that I'm doing, if I can remove
my pivot points I'm gonna be much more accurate. Starting
at the heel of the knife drawing the knife down
and toward me reaching the tip in a nice fluid
motion. It's the best way that we can re-straighten that
edge. The angle is critical. Think of a paper matchbook
put down between the knife and the rod. If the
angle is too wide, we're gonna roll the edge to
the side, or even rip the edge off. If the
angle's too narrow, we risk scratching the knife. And so
just sort of think of that paper match book between
drawing down and toward you. You'll have the best results.
This is something that needs to be done about six
times on each side and to keep the knife straight.
It's gonna need to be done about every two to
three hours that you're actually using a knife. Most of
us at home maybe that's once or twice a week.
For a professional chef once or twice a day. [MUSIC]