For years I struggled to completely wrap each noodle around my fork, just like they do in the movies. The end result was never picture-perfect and inevitably, a splash of sauce would find its way into my eye or onto my clothes. It was at a small café in Florence that I was first served my pasta with a fork and spoon. With the help of a spoon, I could tightly and accurately wrap my linguine, spaghetti and angel hair pasta into a twirl so flawless it was almost a shame to eat it. Undeniably, when it comes to cooking and eating, the right utensils make for a much more enjoyable experience.
This season, you’ll probably find yourself the host of a holiday party or two—and we’ve got a tip that will up the ease of any feast! Gear up for the holidays by getting the scoop on the only three knives you’ll ever need in your kitchen. In this quick video, we show which blades you need and what you’ll need them for. Once you’ve watched the video, try your hand at these easy recipes and put those new knife skills to use.
3 Easy Recipes Using the Only 3 Knives You’ll Ever Need
The Chef’s Knife
This is your all-around knife. Chopping, dicing…it does everything! If you’re ever exiled to a deserted island and allowed only one kitchen utensil, make it a chef’s knife. I’m particularly fond of the way it cleanly slices veggies, like the zucchini, eggplant and peppers found in this Zesty Roasted Vegetable & Cheese Lasagna. Layer upon layer of flavorful vegetables, garlic and three types of cheese make this dish a delicious and unexpected option at your next dinner party.
The Serrated Knife
Don’t you hate to see a beautiful cake ruined by a knife that just doesn’t cut it? Layers are squished down, painstakingly perfected frosting is turned to mush, and by the last slice the dessert is completely detached from its original glory. Keep your feast’s pièce de résistance pretty with a serrated knife. Same goes for a ripe, juicy tomato or a fresh loaf of bread. The grooved teeth of a serrated knife’s blade cut perfectly through delicate dishes like this White Chocolate-Coconut Torte, a heavenly blend of airy white cake, whipped cream and flakes of coconut.
The Paring Knife
For soft fruits the size of your fist and smaller, there’s no tool like the paring knife. Keep juicy plums and nectarines from becoming jam by slicing them carefully. Then, put those yummy fruits to use with this recipe for Rustic Fruit Tart. It requires only 15 minutes of prep time, and the result is a deliciously elegant dessert.
But remember, a dull knife is a useless knife no matter what kind of blade it has. To keep cutting like a pro, it helps to invest in a knife sharpener and to periodically have your knives sharpened by a professional.