Horizontal move from Western to Japanese knives?

Discussion in 'Cooking Knife Reviews' started by carpenter, Jan 7, 2013.

  1. carpenter


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    Home Cook
    Hello all,

    Over the years I've collected a pretty nice set of Western knives.  I have quite a few Sabatiers, a couple of Wusthofs, a few old Henkels along with some Forscheners.  As far as Japanese knives go, I have a Masomoto 270mm HC gyuto and a Konesuke HD 6" petty.  I would like to expand my Japanese knife collection.

    The other day I took a pork shoulder (with bone) and trimmed the fat and skin and diced it up to make sausage.  I used a 10" Sabatier slicer and a Sabatier 6" Nogent "slicing" knife.  What Japanese knives are the equivalent of the Sabatiers I used or what better type and brands of Japanese knives would you guys recommend for that chore?  A suji and honesuki?  I prefer carbon over stainless and I would be hand sharpening these on water stones.

    Thank you.
  2. franzb69


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    Culinary Student
    a honesuki is mostly for poultry.

    a suji is the japanese equivalent of a slicer so that might work, just don't get those laser type sujis.

    a scimitar or a bullnosed butcher's knife would be great as well.
  3. boar_d_laze


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    Cook At Home
    Most sujis are too light for volume meat work.  A professional Japanese cook using "classic" Japanese knives would probably use a deba for everything; while someone who did tons of meat work might choose a garasuke or possibly a honkotsu. 

    The closest thing to your 6" Nogent slicer is a petty -- as you can already tell by comparing it to your Konsouke petty.  I think it's too risky to recommend using something as thin and light as your Kono petty so close to the bone.  But that's "do as I say, not as I do," because I wouldn't hesitate to use mine. 

    Without actually recommending the combination (because I don't think it really matters), but just passing the time of the day:  I'd most likely go with my own 6" Nogent slicer to get the meat off the bone, then either a 10" Forschner Cimiter or one of my heavier chef's knives -- most likely, because it's new, the carbon Ultimatum.  

    Portioning meat for the grinder doesn't require the finesse of a suji, but -- as with so many "which knife" questions -- it becomes a matter of "quien sabe?"  I wouldn't say "unh unh" to the long and laser suji.  If my knife choice criteria were sane and practical, I'd try to pull out as few knives as possible and if I were in a hurry I'd do everything with one knife -- probably my little 7" Nogent chef's.  But cooking for two people isn't what you'd call intense pressure, and I try to get as much screwing around into prepping as humanly possible. 

    Life is uncertain.  Eat dessert first.

    Last edited: Jan 8, 2013