Kitchen Knives - What Are Some of the Common Styles?

Kitchen Knives - What Are Some of the Common Styles?

When you walk into a knife store and see the kitchen section, you’ll notice many different types of knife in all different shapes and sizes. But why? They’re all knives right, they all cut stuff, so what do we need the variety for?? Here’s a run down of the different knives and what they’re designed for.


Chef's Knife: This knife is a great all rounder and a good quality Chef’s Knife’s is a worthwhile investment. On average about 20cm long, you can slice, mince, chop and dice with this versatile utensil.

 Utility Knife: Less long and chunky than a Chef’s Knife, a Utility Knife is almost as versatile. Good for slicing meats like chicken breast and chopping smaller vegetables like potatoes and kumara.


Vegetable/Paring Knife: Great for smaller fruit and vegetables these little knives can do all the precision work; trimming, chopping, coring and peeling make it perfect for that fruit salad you’re making!

 Bread Knife: The Bread Knife’s larger size and serrated edge are designed to get through the tough crust of that delicious home baked bread. HOWEVER, here at the Norseman we think if you have a good quality Chef’s Knife with a well maintained blade, it should do the job just as well with less ‘sawing’ on that soft fluffy inside.

 Tomato Knife: As you probably already guessed, the Tomato Knife is designed for use on….tomatoes! Whoa, mind blown. It’s serrated edge is to cut through the fruit’s skin easily to prevent squishing the flesh. They also have a forked end to use when moving pieces of tomato from here to there.


Cheese Knife: These knives come in a variety of shapes and sizes of their own. For a softer cheese, use a Cheese Knife with a serrated edge and holes in the blade. The holes are to help prevent the cheese getting stuck to the blade. For a harder cheese, a heavier Cheese Knife is the way to go.


Cleaver: A cleaver will often resemble a rectangular hatchet and is best used as a butcher knife. They are great for slashing through thick pieces of meat and soft bones.


 Filleting Knife: Pieces of fish sliced off from the body are called ‘fillets’ and this is where the Filleting Knife gets its name. It comes under the Boning Knife family and the thin blade and sharp point are great for removing the small bones.

 Carving Knife: Carving Knives have a distinctive thinner form which is designed for more precise cutting of thin slices of larger cooked meats like ham and roasts. Often paired with a carving fork for spearing the meat to serve to plate.

Boning Knife: A thin and flexible blade with a sharp point gives these knives precision when removing meat from the bone. They cut through ligaments an d connective tissues as well as separating the fat from the joints.

 Palette Knife: Not really a knife, this is a long flat utensil that is used for flipping crumpets, biscuits, etc easily and cleanly. It also serves as a tool for spreading and smoothing icings and fillings as well as moving delicate pastry items without damaging them.

Pastry Knife: The long blade on the Pastry Knife is great for slicing and cutting large cakes, pies and pastries (…excuse as we wipe the drool off our chin). Useful for lifting rolled pastry off the board and for spreading jam, icing, chocolate and other fillers and toppers.


Believe it or not, this list still doesn’t cover the entire range of Kitchen Knives, but it gives you a good overview.

Keep an eye out for more of our blogs coming up, not just on knives but our other Norseman interests; Norway, Blacksmithing and the Vikings!

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