Cutting Through the Confusing: Typical Mistakes to Avoid When Sharpening Knives

Cutting Through the Confusing: Typical Mistakes to Avoid When Sharpening Knives

You’re not the only one who has ever found yourself squinting in the London drizzle at a dull blade. The london knife sharpening is an ancient art as old as the city’s Roman walls, and there are undoubtedly many dangers involved. Maintaining the best possible condition for your knives is essential, whether you’re a home cook in Hampstead or an aspiring chef in Shoreditch. But oh, the mistakes that can be made!

Let’s talk about angle misadventures first. The angle at which you sharpen is similar to the angle at which you drink tea; if you do it incorrectly, it won’t taste good. A lot of Londoners have a propensity to take too long or too short, which leaves them with an extremely brittle edge or none at all. Every knife has a sweet spot, usually with a temperature of 15 to 20 degrees. Think of it as your hat tilt; for maximum effect, it needs to be just a little bit jaunty.

And there’s the error of not being consistent. Imagine yourself riding the Tube as it suddenly stops and you lurch forward and then back. So it’s not consistent? And the same holds true for honing. Every movement has to be as steady as the Guards of the Queen. An edge that is as uneven as cobblestone streets might result from changes in pressure or direction. Friends, consistency is vital.

Using the incorrect tools is another mistake. Consider attempting to spread butter on a crumpet using a spoon; it’s possible, although it seems a little odd. For sharpening, the same holds true. If your instrument is very rough, it may appear as though it has been used in a swordfight. You might as well not bother, it’s too fine. Understand your equipment, be familiar with your knives, and never use an honing steel incorrectly its purpose is to straighten, not to redefine, an edge.

One mistake deserving of a lesson is failing to keep your tools clean. Spend some time cleaning your sharpener, even in the middle of preparing a Sunday roast. A clogged sharpener can be as useless as a teapot filled with chocolate. It will just partially bite into the metal, giving you a knife that is hardly more sharp than a marble.

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