We are often asked what the difference between a chef’s knife and a santoku is. In this article, we try to answer the question for you. The biggest difference is in the shape of the blade. While the blade of a chef’s knife ends in a sharp point, the blade of a Santokus runs diagonally from the back to the cut. Both knives, therefore, require a different cutting technique.
As a rule, a chef’s knife has a blade that is approx. 20 cm or 8 inches long. There are also smaller chef’s knives with a blade approx. 16 cm or 6 inches long, although professional chefs often prefer longer knives. Chef’s knives have a high blade back of approx. 4 to 5 cm, so that you can lean the fingers with which you hold the ingredient against the side of the blade. So you can work safely and quickly.
A chef’s knife is the basis of a knife set and is suitable for cutting vegetables, meat and fish. But it also serves as a chopping knife for chopping herbs. With this cutting technique, the chef’s knife is moved straight up and down along the finger. In this case, there is constant contact with the cutting board and the tip. This creates a swaying movement.
Santoku knives originally come from Asian cuisine and are the Japanese version of the chef’s knife. In contrast to the chef’s knife, the shape of the blade on a Santoku is almost the same width over the entire length and only runs a few centimeters from the tip downwards at an angle to the cut. In addition, a Santoku is lighter and shorter than its European brother. This makes Santoku knives very popular with professional and amateur cooks.
A Santoku knife uses a cutting technique that differs from that of a chef’s knife. Because of the flat blade, you don’t move a santoku on the cut surface like the blade of a chef’s knife. Hold the Santoku tightly by the handle and cut the clippings with a backward, top-down movement. with every cut, the blade loses contact with the cutting board. To avoid cutting your fingers, you should hold the fingers with which you are holding the product inward. The same applies here: Practice makes perfect!
Which Kitchen Knife is Better?
You can easily cut through meat, fish and vegetables with both a sharp chef’s knife and a sharp Santoku knife. Fine-cutting herbs is also no problem for either kitchen knife. So the biggest difference lies in the construction of the blade, so it is a matter of taste and cutting experience which knife is preferred.
A santoku knife is no better or worse than a chef’s knife. It’s just a different type of knife with a different cutting technique that can be used to perform similar tasks.
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