appropriate one. Avoid steels that have groves. Restaurant supplies may be a good source for a Butcher's steel. Use it frequently, ideally, every time the knife is used.
A good cutting board can protect the cutting edge of the knife. Surfaces such as glass, steel, ceramics and marble are too hard for the delicate edge of a good knife. Wood is generally the best material for the cutting board, but this is subject to personal preference. Some chefs today swear by the flexible boards for cutting vegetables.
A knife should always be sharp. It will do a better job at cutting food instead of tearing through it. It is also safer for the user. The dull knife requires much more force to work and decreases control. If it slips, there is a greater chance of injury. Always handle the sharp blade with caution.
Avoid using the edge of the knife to scrape foods from the cutting board. The angle used in this action can dull it quickly. The edge of your knife is only a few microns thick and this use can bend the blade. If the knife must be used to remove food from the board, turn it over and use the thicker knife back.
It is better to sharpen a knife than to let it become significantly dull. The sharpening process is easier every time. In addition, this protects the knife as less metal is removed due to deformation of the edge. In short, keeping the knife sharp is the best way to ensure its long life.
Always choose the right knife for a job. A paring knife should not be used for chopping bones and cleavers do not work for peeling potatoes. Choosing the right knife for the job makes it easier and prevents damage to the edge. A knife is never the right tool to tighten a screw, drive a nail or chop down a tree.
One's knife should be cleaned quickly after each use. This will prevent formation of rust and decrease the chances of cross contamination of food. Do not let a knife sit on a table or in a sink dirty. Avoid use of the dishwasher that can damage a knife. It should be dry and clean before placed in a storage block. Storing a knife wet can cause it to rust.
Most people find good kitchen knives to be a sizable investment worthy of good care. Keep them sharp, clean and dry to increase their lifespan. When possible avoid buying cheap sets that do not tend to hold up to normal use in preparing meals.