January 13, 2012 Comments Off on Knife

I am dogsitting for Wendy and Jim’s two lovable dogs. Yesterday I got here for a sort of orientation, mostly involving the workings of the TV and related paraphernalia and the kitchen. The kitchen is way cool: it’s impossible to find anything, but when you find it it is invariably excellent, and the stove is huge and emphatically high-quality. Jim brandished a shapely but not particularly handsome knife and informed me that it was Carbon Steel, and that it was way awesome, and if used had to be immediately washed and dried, or else. “These turn black real fast,” he said, “especially if you chop onions with them.” But when I expressed my intention of not using them for fear of ruining them, he said, “No, no, they’re great knives.”

So tonight I made baked chicken and vegetables, and I used the Knife. Carefully laying out all the washed vegetables in a convenient line for efficiency’s sake, I took a deep breath and went to town. Oh, the wonder! The blade’s sharpness can only be described with Lovecraftian superlatives; it bit through to the cutting board so hard you couldn’t slide it forward. It was heavy and beautiful, and I finished chopping in no time. Still, once I started in on the onions I got really paranoid that I was taking too long—oh god, I was going to ruin the beautiful Knife, oh god how much does it cost?—my breathing came shallow and my hands were shaking slightly. But I finished! And when I did I lunged for the sink and immediately washed it very well and dried it thoroughly and stuck it back on its nice magnetic rack and nothing turned black and nothing was ruined. It was a productive evening. And one day I will have my own set of Carbon Steel Knives.


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