Japanese Knives

They are sharper, thinner and mega strong; the Japanese knives. Whether you are a hobby chef or a professional, a Japanese knife is really indispensable in every kitchen. Simply because these knives can cut very precisely and stay sharp much longer. In other words, no piece of meat, vegetables or herbs is safe for these knives. That a Japanese knife is so strong and sharp is because they are sharpened in a Japanese way and are made of Damascus steel. View our range of Japanese knives below.

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Japanese knives are stronger and razor sharp

What makes a Japanese knife a Japanese knife? This is firstly because Japanese knives are sharpened in a Japanese way. They are sharpened at a small angle, making them razor sharp. This allows you to easily cut all the ingredients you need for a recipe. Secondly, Japanese knives are made of Damascus steel. This type of steel is harder than the European version. These knives consist of 67 layers of steel. Due to the frequent folding of the steel, more carbon is absorbed and distributed throughout the steel. This makes the steel extremely hard. In addition, this steel looks stunning. You can recognize this type of steel by the cloud and wave-like patterns. In short, a Japanese knife is not only razor sharp because of the way it is sharpened. They also stay sharp longer because they are made of hard Damascus steel.


Why buy Japanese knives for your kitchen?

We mentioned above that Japanese knives are stronger and razor sharp. But there are even more advantages of these superior knives. Here are all the advantages at a glance.

  • Japanese knives are razor sharp and they stay sharp longer.
  • The knives are lightweight so that cutting is not tiring and you have better control over the knife.
  • The lightweight blade also ensures that you can cut much more precisely.
  • Japanese knives are all unique and beautiful to look at. The special patterns of damask steel make the Japanese knives a real collector's item.
  • Because cutting your ingredients is so smooth and easy, cooking becomes fun!

In short, all the advantages of Japanese knives added together make these knives indispensable for your kitchen. Have you already decided which one to go with? For example, the popular Hammered Damast BR - Damascus Chef's Knife or a very Japanese knife set Damast Pakka Wood 6-piece Damascus Knife Set .

The different types of Japanese knives

There is not one type of Japanese knife. There are many different types of Japanese knives. At the KookGigant we have several in our range and we have many in stock. You will find the following types of Japanese knives in our webshop:

Santoku

A Japanese Santoku knife is most similar to the standard kitchen knife. The Santoku is also used as a chef's knife for all kinds of cutting tasks in Japanese cuisine. Santoku in Japanese literally means: 3 purposes. This means cutting, chopping and carving vegetables, meat and fish. This knife is therefore a real all-rounder, razor-sharp and wonderful to use.

Kiritsuke

A Japanese Kiritsuke knife , just like the Santoku, a real all-rounder. The knife is a combination of a Japanese vegetable and a meat knife. The blade is wide at the beginning for cutting vegetables. At the end, the blade tapers into a sharp point for cutting meat.

Nakiri

The Nakiri is the vegetable knife among the Japanese knives. The knife has an angular blade and the cutting surface is completely flat. The reason for this is that you make contact with the cutting board over the entire blade during cutting. As a result, you always have the entire vegetables in half with one cutting movement. The Nakiri knife looks heavy, but it is actually lightweight for maximum control while cutting. The Nakiri is especially suitable for precise and thin cutting of vegetables.

Yanigaba

The Yanigaba is the Japanese sushi knife. The blade has a long blade of 22 cm and is perfect for cutting sushi or sashimi. The knife is specially designed to accurately cut beautiful slices of fish. Halfway the blade is a long edge over the entire length of the blade. This edge ensures that no slices of fish stick to the blade during cutting.

Sujihiki

A Sujihiki is a carving knife with a long blade of 20 cm. Just like with the sushi knife to cut slices with a single cutting movement.

Hardness of Japanese knives

Japanese knives are known to be harder than European knives. The hardness of the steel determines how long the blade will stay sharp. So the harder the steel is, the longer the blade will stay sharp. The hardness of a blade is tested at the factory. This is then indicated in Rockwell hardness (HR). The higher the hardness, the higher the HR number and the longer the blade stays sharp.

The hardness of European knives starts at an HR score of 52 and is usually between 54 and 58. The hardness of Japanese knives starts at 58 up to a maximum of 66. How is it possible that the hardness of Japanese knives is many times higher than European knives? blades is the carbon content in the steel.

How do you maintain Japanese knives?

The best way to clean Japanese knives depends on the type of steel and handle material. Almost all KookGigant knives have a handle made of pakka or oak wood. Except for the print and stainless steel series, all Japanese knives are made of damascus steel.

It is best to clean a Japanese knife by hand with warm water and soap. Are they clean? After washing, dry them well, both the blade and the handle. For the life of the blades it is important that the blades do not remain damp for too long. Preferably clean them quickly after use and, above all, dry them.


Japanese knives are razor sharp and stay that way for a long time. Nevertheless, it is occasionally necessary to sharpen the blades. Do this with a sharpening stone , so you can enjoy your Japanese knives for an extra long time.

Japanese knife set

First of all, it is important to know that the sharper the angle, the sharper the blade. European knives are often sharpened at an angle of 20 degrees per side and therefore at 40 degrees for the entire blade. Japanese knives can be sharpened much sharper due to the combination of the hard steel and a thin blade. Japanese knives are often sharpened at an angle of 15 degrees per side and therefore at 30 degrees for the entire blade, making them extremely sharp. With the KookGigant sharpening stones you can easily sharpen your Japanese knives at an angle of 15 degrees using the sharpening clip that you click on the knife.

How do I choose the right Japanese knife or Japanese knife set?

A Japanese knife is always a good choice and you will enjoy it for the rest of your life. But which knife or knife set is right for me? Don't worry, we'll help you make that choice. Are you thinking about purchasing a Japanese knife? Then indeed start with a single knife and then expand later. Which one do you buy first? We recommend two: a Santoku knife and Nakiri. Then expand your Japanese knife collection with other knives that you often use in the kitchen, such as a bread knife, paring knife and a utility knife. Do you often eat meat or fish? Then also add a chef's knife and a sushi knife or meat knife. Take a good look at which cutting tasks you need a knife for.

Small or big budget?

With a small budget, there are enough individual knives as well as knife sets. What matters most is how much you want a knife made of real damascus steel. With a small budget there are 3 options: a knife set made of stainless steel, damascus print or a knife made of real damascus.

In addition, your needs determine the size of the knife set. With the larger knife sets you will find more specific knives for meat, fish or poultry. If you need a knife for boning meat or filleting fish, we recommend purchasing a larger knife set.

Santoku vs Kiritsuke

Just like the Santoku, the kiritsuke is an all-round chef's knife. Meat and vegetables are no problem for the Kiritsuke. Of the two, the Santoku is the friendliest to begin with. The Santoku functions most like a regular chef's knife, with the Kiritsuke requiring a different cutting technique. The Kiritsuke is more specialized and is more often used by experienced hobby or chef cooks. If you don't have a Santoku yet, we recommend that you at least buy a separate Santoku or one in a knife set.

Material of the handles

The material of the handles of Japanese knives vary. There are handles of various types of wood and metal. The most common handles are made of Pakka wood, Mahogany wood, Hardwood, Ebony wood and stainless steel.

Pakka wood is the most commonly used handle for Japanese knives. Pakka wood is also sold under the brand name Pakkawood or Colorwood. It is made by pressing hard and hardwoods together under high pressure. Due to the very high density and the use of resin, the material is very strong, durable and water-resistant and therefore perfect for use in the kitchen.

Stainless steel and plastic handles are very convenient. These can simply be put in the dishwasher and do not require any maintenance. Another advantage of stainless steel and plastic handles is that they do not expand or shrink. This sometimes happens with wood.

Mahogany is a reddish-brown type of wood from the West Indies. Mahogany is a very durable and stable type of wood and is therefore widely used for knives, but also for making furniture or boats.

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