IKEA Herb Cutting Board With Rocker Knife


General Information

This is a lower line "economy" type concave herb cutting board. The board measures 8"x8", made of laminated hardwood strips with concave "tray". Included knife is a one-piece stainless steel, double-edged Mezzaluna "rocker" type.

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Pros: Easy-to-use for quick, non-symmetrical herb and light veggie dicing/mincing.
Cons: Lacks the precision of using a knife and standard flat board for more uniform cuts.
I find these herb cutting boards useful in many kitchen situations, this one being no exception.

Many chefs would agree there is an undeniable "aesthetic factor " with cutting boards as well as utilitarian, ease of use etc. Which translates to how pleasing they are to look at, while using or just sitting on the table in front of guests. This particular board, though hardwood, lacks the finished wood quality/luster of higher-end boards; (e.g., it has a "filled" knothole)  So, placing some of the more appealing boards, such as those of Asian Acacia at the high end of a 1-10 scale, while a straight block of unfinished pine or maple would reside on the lower end, I award this board an aesthetic rating of 5.5, due to its hardwood, laminated strip construction, as well as displaying a few attractive knots. 

While I haven't used it long enough to rate its comparative durability, it seems to be holding up so far, and its joints appear flawlessly tight, failing to sport even the tiniest "gaps"--good news of course, from both sanitation and maintenance standpoints.

As sheer utility goes, I would rate this one  6, taking into account this is a "set" that included the chopper knife. Though Mezzaluna knives, (which I lovingly call Sickle-Slicers) both single and double-edged do take some getting used to, I find this springy, "bent-over"  one-piece, one-handed rocker knife a bit "flimsy" feeling in the hand; I might in the future prefer one with a solid handle. (One tip I might offer to those who might be unable to get accustomed to using the rocker knife: concave boards lend themselves to substituting a quality "pizza cutter" to do some quick work, affording a more familiar and "secure feeling" in lieu of the unsure one mentioned above.)

While there are, and I have used better quality herb-boards since, I still employ this one for regular home use. Overall I consider it a good "entry-level"  introduction to herb-cutter type boards for light to medium use, and a low-cost way to discover if these type boards are for you. 

(Note: Maximum care should be observed when using/cleaning  doubled edged rocker type blades, to avoid personal injury. )
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I do like single edged mezalunas of good quality steel, but they are hard to find. Mezalunas almost always have very poor quality steel. I HATE double bladed mezalunas because they are so hard to keep sharp. First they get dull faster, second it is near impossible to reall sharpen it. You can really only hone it.

Mezalunas are good for dried herbs, but they bruise fresh herbs because of technique and because they are almost always so dull. Honestly, would you cut cilantro or basil with a chefs knife as dull as a mezaluna is even straight from the factory? Then why would you use a duller edge, especially one that hsn't been sharpend and at best has only been honed?

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