7 Types of Japanese Kitchen Knives
#1 The Chukabocho
The Chukabocho, a multipurpose knife, is a Japanese version of the Chinese cleaver. This cleaver's large and rectangular shape is astonishing because it allows every single area of the blade to be utilized in preparing a wide variety of veggies, fruit, spices, and herbs. However, the Chukabocho is not intended for use with any selection of meat. The cleaver's blade length reaches up to 8 inches with a 5 inch height. Read below for two great Chukabocho options.
- Shun DM0712 Classic Veggie Cleaver
While the end of the Shun is square and blunt, the spine is rather thick and tapers down to a thin, sharp blade. Not to mention, its cutting edge features a highly versatile double bevel which offers optimum performance. Any slicing technique can be executed with the Shun as its long die-straight blade has a slightly curved tip perfect for rock chopping. This chukabocho can be utilized to chop, mince, peel, or trim the most delicate of herbs up to the largest heads of cabbage.
- Yaxell Ran 7 inch Cleaver
As one of the top chukabocho knives on the market, the Yaxell Tan is made from VG-10 stainless steel and features a luxurious black micarta handle. The flat side of it's blade can be utilized to breakdown items such as nuts, garlic, and ginger while its spine works best to tenderize meat. Plus, the larger area of the blade makes for an ample scooper to maneuver large piles of chopped food.
#2 The Gyuto
The Gyuto is a Japanese style chef knife that closely resembles the shape and stature of a Western-style chef knife. As a hybrid of the Western cook's knife and a Japanese Nakiri, the Gyuto is extremely evolved and can handle a multitude of jobs from chopping vegetables to cutting meat, poultry, and fish. This nimble knife hosts a long and thin blade much like that of a French Sabatier, however its belly curve does not protrude as far. Offering a double beveled edge, the Gyuto is sharp on each side and typically eight to twelve inches long.
- Yoshihiro Stainless Steel Gyuto
The Yoshihiro stainless steel gyuto is an impeccably lightweight knife with a traditional 'Wa' style handle. The Wa style handle features an octagonal profile that is popularly carved from hardwood. This all-purpose knife excels at fine precision work such as mincing vegetables and thin proteins. Unfortunately, the Yoshihiro Stainless Steel Gyuto can not cut through hard and dense materials like cartilage or bone.
#3 The Western Deba
The Western Deba is yet another multi purpose knife that closely resembles a Western cook's knife. However, unlike the gyuto a Western Deba is created for heavy duty performance. The Western Deba is a unique blend of a cleaver and a chef's knife that has produced a thick and long blade measuring between six and ten inches long with additional larger models available. Great for rock chopping, the Western Deba posses a wider bellied cutting edge, drop tip, and elevated spine.
- Masahiro Western-Style Deba
Perfect for a domestic or professional kitchen, the Masahiro western-style deba is an inox stainless steel beauty. The Mashiro offers a double bevel edge, thick spine, and heavy duty blade for cutting through fish bones and beef joints. The knife's obtuse angle and bilateral edge not only enhances its durability, it also adds to its versatility. Great for splitting crustacean shells like snow crab and lobster, the Masahiro western-style deba can also cut effortlessly through thick skinned fruit like pineapples. It is a chef's dream knife.
#4 The Sujihiki
Designed for slicing meat, poultry, and fish, the Sujihiki offers a long, narrow blade short in height. The blade's short height is optimal for reducing friction when cutting extremely thin strips of your preferred protein. Plus, even the oiliest of fish will not stick to the Sujihiki's small edge or surface.
- Misono UX10 Line
The Misono is equipped with a long and thin blade ranging from nine to twelve inches long. This long blade will glide effortlessly through even the toughest pieces of protein. The Misono glides with single action precision only requiring a light and deft touch. It is commonly regarded as the Western version of the traditional yanagi (sashimi knife). The Misono UX10 is quite similar in function to that of a conventional carving knife making it ideal for slicing and serving. The Torijo line Sujihiki knife is a great inexpensive option for the cook on a budget.
#5 The Paring Knife
The Japanese Paring knife popularly features a western-styled handle and three inch blade. It is equipped with a short blade designed for delicate peeling work on vegetables, and fruits. The high quality yet affordable Torijo DP is an optimal choice when shopping for a paring knife.
#6 The Bread Knife
Admittedly the bread knife is not a traditional Japanese form, however several bread knives are designed and manufactured in Japan. Contrary to popular belief, the bread knife is not solely utilized for bread and can be used for other work like slicing tomatoes and other fleshy foods. The Mac Knife Superior Bread Knife has been recently deemed as one of the top bread knifes on the market.
#7 Steak Knives
The Japanese Steak Knives are unique because they offer serration free edges. Constructed from razor sharp steel and a sixteen degree bevel, the Japanese Steak Knifes do not need to be serrated because they are created to glide easily through steak. It is so sharp in fact that it will leave a clean edge retaining all juiciness and flavor. The Enso HD 6-Piece Steak Knife Set offers 6 inches of extraordinarily smooth, single stroke slicing. It provides optimum control unlike any other steak knife around.