Five-Minute Betterments: Sharpen Your Teeth (Or Lay Flat)!

[I’m just messing around.  This is actually a post about sharpening your knives but the above is a line from “Pacifico” by Ugly Casanova.  Ugly Casanova, as you may or may not know, is the side project of Modest Mouse frontman Isaac Brock and others.  Modest Mouse was a large part of the soundtrack to a pretty substantial part of my life and Ugly Casanova played in heavy rotation for a while there, too.  It’s definitely worth a listen if you’ve got more than five minutes to kill.]

Sharpen your knives!  I timed myself doing this one to make sure it would work and it did for me.  I have had the same four Pampered Chef knives for the past five or six years: a Santoku, a cook’s knife, a utility knife, and a bread knife.  I also have a ceramic knife sharpener (not pictured).

#Knives !

A post shared by David Glass (@thatmanglass) on

All of these items and some other crucial things in my kitchen were gifts/hand-me-downs from my mom when she got newer ones or had extras that she wasn’t using.  She used to be a Pampered Chef consultant so she’s got a kitchen full of their stuff and I really like the vast majority of it.  I really haven’t found one of their products that I don’t like, actually, just stuff that I tend to not have a use for in my day-to-day cooking.

[I got the cutting board at an estate sale for $3 and it’s amazing.  It was handmade in Del Valle, Texas and I believe it’s mesquite.  It’s from the “IsaacWare” line from a company called Star of Texas Woodworks which, as far as I can tell, does not exist anymore.]

I have taken good care of my knives and they have, in return, taken good care of me.  I think that that’s part of the deeper meaning and importance of knife-sharpening that I’d like to briefly get into.  It’s kind of Zen to get out your knives and carefully and methodically take them to the stone or steel.  It shows a respect that a lot of people don’t seem to have these days.  A respect that, when shown to an inanimate object, can translate to the people around you.  I’ve talked before about inward positivity permeating outwardly and this is another instance in which that happens.  Take care of your knives and you show respect to the higher culinary cause.  Show respect to yourself, and you show respect to the higher human cause.  It’s a small step, but with big implications.

And there’s no better feeling than getting through a hunk of raw meat in one slice.  Which reminds me:

I refer to my past self as yesterDave, clearly a clever portmanteau (ho hum!) of the word “yesterday” and my name, “Dave.”  YesterDave is responsible for some of my bigger goofs, but more often, some of my grander successes.  A small example would be when yesterDave puts the garage door clicker in the console so that we went go out scavenging, I (toDave) don’t have to run into the Glass House to get it, thereby eliminating a potential delay of at least 15-20 minutes since I tend to get sidetracked when I run inside and often need to use the Wizz Palace (right, Knope?).  Crisis averted!  Anyway, I like to give credit when and where credit is due and a sharp knife through raw meat definitely earns yesterDave a solid nod.

So, keep them sharp and the sharpness will spread.

Keenly,

D. Glass

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