Knife Safety and The French Knife- Info

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                                    Knife Safety
How to Use a Knife
1.    Use the correct knife for the job.
2.    Always use a cutting board with a damp cloth underneath to stop the board from slipping.
3.    Claw back your hand while cutting and use your knuckles as a guide.
4.    Cut away from your body.
5.    Never cut vegetables in the palm of your hand.
6.    Always keep knives sharp. A dull knife is more dangerous than a sharp one.
7.    Always pick up a knife by the handle.
8.    Leave your knife on the cutting board when you leave your station.
9.    Do not use knives to open cans, boxes or bottles.

To Carry a Knife Safely
10.   Never carry knives unnecessarily.
11.   Hold knives by the handle, with their points toward the floor, the blade facing back and
      the knife held close to your side. Keep one hand free to stop people from walking into
      you by mistake.
12.   If you drop a knife, do not try to catch it.

To Clean a Knife
13.   Never place a knife in a sink full of water or dishes. They can’t be seen..
14.   Always clean your own knife and put it away immediately.
15.   Wipe a knife from the dull edge to the sharp edge and dry it the same way.

Other Safety Rules
16.   Never gesture with a knife when you are speaking.
17.   Do not leave knives near the edge of a table or work surface.
18.   Never put knives in a drawer loose. Use a rack or knife block to protect the blade.

                      The French Knife and Its Uses

               Seven Important Features of a Good French Knife
1.   A non- flexible steel blade, preferably stainless steel.
2.   Good heavy hilt.
3.   The top of the blade must be broad at the hilt.

4.    Firm and comfortable handle.
5.    The blade of the knife must be deep enough to give clearance between your knuckles
      and the cutting board.
6.    The cutting edge of the blade must be true (flat and straight). A worn and hollow knife
      will not cut evenly and has to be ground on a stone to make it true.
7.    The tang of the blade should follow through to the end of the handle.

            The Four Correct Cutting Methods With the French Knife

1.    The Pushing Action: (used the most)
           Hold the knife firmly by its handle near the hilt. The thumb and fore-finger steady
            the blade from both sides. With your other hand, guide the blade using your
            knuckles not the fingertips.
           The point of the knife rests on the board and is never lifted. This is a safety
            precaution and adds to the control of the knife when cutting quickly.
           Lift handle up, and as you cut down on the product, push forward. Pull back as
            you lift the handle again. This movement becomes a circular motion of the hand.
           This is the fastest cutting action and is used for dicing , and slicing vegetables and

Remember: Never lift the point of the knife off the board, and always be aware of the hand
          holding the product.

2.       The Pulling Action:
               Exactly the reverse of the pushing action, except that at times it is necessary to lift
         the point of the knife off the board.
               Mostly used on vegetables with a tough skin such as green peppers and

1.       The Combination
             This is used when meat has to be sliced or carved.
             This sawing motion is effective for cutting the meat fibers which are tougher than
              those of vegetables.

1.       Mincing
              The knife is held parallel to the cutting board.
              The handle is held in one hand and the fingertips of the other hand rest on top of
               the knife point to keep it on the cutting board.
              The handle is lifted off the cutting board causing the knife to rock up on its tip and
               then brought down again. This rocking motion is done rapidly.

                                   Cutting Terminology

     Term                  Definition                              Tools and Technique
 Slice        To cut into uniform pieces.               French knife & carving knife - pushing,
                                                        pulling or combination action - also meat
 Chop         To cut into pieces of no specific         French knife - Pushing action
 Dice         To cut into uniform cubes.                French knife - Pushing action
 Mince        To chop very fine.                        French knife - Mincing action - can also use
                                                        food processor
 Puree        To mince extremely fine.                  Food processor

Julienne   Threadlike and longer than a       French knife - Pushing action
Grate      Uneven small shreds.               Box grater or food processor


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