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The classic European chef’s knife is not the ideal kitchen tool. In fact, there is a world of knives, many from Japan, that are easier to use, safer, and better suited for the everyday cook. So here are our picks that will change the way you cook, making your kitchen prep faster and more fun.
Every kitchen should have a Chinese-style cleaver, whose tall, heavy-duty blade and forward-heavy balance do most of the work for you when chopping big batches of vegetables and mincing meats or herbs. We found an excellent model from Japanese producer Toryumon that, unlike most flat-bellied cleavers, has a slightly curved edge similar to a European-style chef’s knife, so American home cooks will find it easier to use. Roughly 7 inches long and 3.5 inches tall, the blade is smaller and more approachable than other models and ideal for those with smaller hands.
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