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Select the right knife needed for the job. Keep all knives in a rack or blockto prevent direct contact with each other or other hard objects. Don't toss them in a drawer or use them to open cans, remove jar and bottle caps or cut string, cones, metal or paper. Always use acutting boardor proper cutting surface when chopping slicing or mincing....never cut on metal, glass or porcelain. Knives of carbon steel should be washed and dried immediately after use to prevent rusting. Never permit knives to soak in water. For efficient performance, keep knives sharp; a dull knife can be dangerous. For tips onknife sharpening see Alton Brown from the Food Network demonstrate his techniques.
Kitchen knives demand constant inspection for efficient performance. A fine cutting edge made from the best steel and the finest manufacturing know-how will turn its edge if used on a hard surface.
Ordinary slicing of meat will dull a good edge. However, this doesn't mean that the knife needs sharpening. A few light strokes on a sharpening steel will reset the edge and restore the knife's keeness. Eventually this keen edge wears off and the use of a steel will not restore it. The knife must then be reground.
Careful grinding with a quality hand or motor grinding wheel or stone may be used. It is of extreme importance, when grinding , not to overheat the blade, as excessive heat will draw the temper, and the blade will no longer hold its edge. A wet grindstone is the best possible protection against overheating. A good lubricated stone can be used when steeling fails to bring an edge back. With proper instruction, you can become quite skilled at sharpening knives.