Knives are an imprescriptible element of any kitchen. However, these products need proper storage. Most people just store them in a standard wooden stand that comes with a set of these tools, or even just in a drawer, along with other cutlery. Only few people ask how to store knives so that they do not corrode and retain their qualities for as long as possible.
The storage issue is particularly severe for high-quality products of the world brands, whose price may reach several hundred dollars. However, competent storage is desirable not only for them, but also for lower-end products.
If you cook regularly and try to like making complicated dishes, then you cannot do without good-quality knives. With a good knife, you can quickly and properly cut the vegetables for the salad, finely chop the jerky, chop the cabbage and even cut the biscuit cake into several parts.
How to store knives properly?
In order for your knives to always remain “in shape” you need to follow several simple rules.
1. Store knives separately
One of the most important rules for knife care is always keeping them separate from other kitchen items. They can be stored in a special stand, in a separate container or box. The main thing is not to keep them with other cutlery. If you follow this rule, then your knives will be sharp for a long time and without visible damage. This will avoid corrosion, reactions with the metal of other tools. Yes, and trying to get a knife can cause injury.
2. Intended use
Professional chefs are attached to their knives so much, believing them to be real assistants in the kitchen, that it would hardly occur to them to clean a chewing gum from a parquet or cut flower stems with a knife. There are all necessary devices for each action. If you want the knives to serve for a long time, then use them only for cutting and chopping food products. It is advisable that each knife be highly specialized. A bread knife is best to cut bread only, a knife for slicing is designed for vegetables. It is also better chopping hard bones or meat pieces with a special hatchet.
3. Soft surface
It is not recommended to use knives for cutting on ceramic, glass, stone and metal surfaces as they are too hard and can quickly damage your knives. Better, use natural wood planks. They are soft, but also durable. Contact with the natural tree will allow your knife serving as long as possible.
4. Timely washing
All knives should be washed immediately after use. Leaving the knife in the sink “for later”, you allow corrosion destroying its surface. It is especially important to wash the knife immediately after you cut citrus fruits or tomatoes. The acid that is contained in them can spoil the surface very quickly. After washing, it is important to wipe the knife dry without leaving wet traces on it. The most inaccessible place is at the base of the blade. It is it that is washed most often badly, so the growth of pathogenic bacteria starts there. It is important to check and additionally process this place from time to time. Do not expose knives to bleaches, soda and chlorine-containing products; otherwise, the steel will quickly oxidize.
5. Hand wash
It is better to wash all knives by hand; do not put them in the dishwasher. Only if the manufacturer has not provided this action. However, even if dishwashing is provided for your knives do not use the drying function and wash them in warm water only. This will protect the knives from a quick failure. Hot water destroys the surface of the knife. By the way, never use a knife to check the readiness of a hot dish for the same reason.
Almost all types of knives need to be sharpened from time to time and better with specially designed devices. Today you can buy small home appliances for sharpening. However, buying a knife, pay attention to the material it is made of. Some knives do not require additional sharpening.
7. Take care of the appearance
They say that one can determine a good housewife and a professional chef by the state of their knives. That is why the surface of the blade should be wiped to give shine from time to time. A polished knife is easier to cut food products and this requires less effort. Polish can be done using special tools or half-raw potatoes. After the procedure, it is important to wipe the knife dry with a soft cotton.
Popular modern ceramic knives should also be highlighted: they are quite hard, but have increased fragility. Therefore, their cleaning and washing is carried out more carefully and neatly, and improper storage is not just recommended for them, but are very unacceptable.
Where to store knives
It is better to store knives in the immediate vicinity of the place where they are most often used. However, this does not mean that they simply need to be thrown into one drawer. If you are a happy owner of a large kitchen, then most likely you have several work areas having various functions. Try to arrange the knives according to their intended use.
If you are just planning to make repairs in your kitchen, think in advance, where you will be most comfortable preparing food. Then decide on the configuration, the type of countertop and knives for each zone.
Whether you are working on a new design or trying to optimize an existing one, pay attention to the possibility to store knives on a wall attached to a magnetic bar, or inside a special unit, for example, built into a countertop. Both of these options are convenient and safe, they provide easy access to the necessary things in any conditions. This is especially true when your hands are somewhat dirty in the process, and you urgently need another knife. If you try to get it out of a drawer or cabinet, you will subsequently have to spend time washing the handles that you will inevitably touch.
Although, if storing the knives in plain sight does not suit you for some reason, try to choose the safest way, in your opinion. Some manufacturers produce simple and comfortable sections for drawers, where each item will have its own place and sharp blades cannot hurt anyone. The option with a drawer is especially suitable for a small kitchen. Thanks to it, the island’s countertop will always remain vacant, and there will be more space for storing other things in drawers and cabinets.
If you have little kids that are hard to keep track of, you should take additional safety measures. Locks guarantee you peace of mind.
Another example of storing knives at a convenient distance for you, but outside the reach of the kids, is the unit built into the countertop, which is based on a simple and universal design: a combination of narrow slots in the countertop. This idea works great because no knife will ever fall out of its cell or hurt anyone.
If you are inclined to this particular option, you need to consider the fact that some knives can have too long blade that will touch the components of the cabinet located below or simply will not go into the slot for its entire length. And this is not what we expect from ergonomic solutions at all. You have to refuse something – either from long knives, or from storing things in the lower part of the cabinet.
So, you were offered many options of how to store knives. Each of them is convenient in its own way, but in any case, the choice is up to you. Let’s remind you once again that sharp objects should be handled with extreme care and kept out of the reach of children. Try not to save on the purchase of kitchen furniture, as this will almost inevitably affect its quality.