Ceramic knives are presented as a separate category on our site and there is a good reason why. They differ a lot from the usual metal knives through the futuristic material of which they are made. This stuff gives them their unique qualities, but, to be fair, also constrain to some limitations. So let us go through main points to find out more.
What’s so special about ceramic knives?
Ceramic material is basically a pressed zirconium or aluminum oxide’s powder that is baked in high temperatures thus making the material super solid and not porous. Similar technologies were used for the US Space Shuttles facing because ceramics can handle the severe conditions of a space flight. Because of this procedure ceramic knives become bacteria resistant, rust free and are so extremely hard that they can be compared to diamonds. That is why their blades are sharpened by using the special diamond-dust coated grinders.
Ceramic knife: pros
What is hidden behind the unusual sharpening process is the main characteristic that makes the ceramic knives stand out from the rest of the knives – the incredible sharpness. They are so sharp that you use almost no force when slicing a product; the knife glides as if falling through under its own weight. This extreme, even frightening razor sharpness can be and is used by chefs around the world for paper-thin slicing and peeling.
Ceramics do not leach the metal ions in the food thus preventing any metal aftertaste in you cuisine. The ceramic material is also very light compared to steel (sometimes these knives can be five times lighter than the metal ones); therefore your hands will be less tired when having to carry out a lot of food cutting.
Ceramic knife: cons
Being exceptionally sharp and hard as well, ceramic knives can do without grinding for years, especially when talking about the highest quality ones. But when eventually the time comes for refining one you will need a special ceramic knife sharpener because the standard ones are of no use for zirconium filled ceramics. Alternatively, one of the leading manufacturers – Kyocera (which stands for Kyoto ceramics) corporation from Japan offers its customers sending their own branded ceramic knives back to Kyoto factory for sharpening at a cost of transportation fees.
Another important feature of all ceramic knives is that they are brittle, which comes as a price for superb hardness. In order not to break the ceramics you need to keep it in a safe stand and not use it for frozen food and boney kinds of meat, fish or poultry. It is not recommended to clean them in a dishwasher, just rinse them manually and wipe them off instead.
Choosing between metal or ceramic knives? Use both
Honestly saying, we don’t see ceramic knives replacing the metal ones in the near future – there are just too many things that they still can’t do. No matter how blissfully sharp they are you will still need a good old chef’s knife at your disposal for some harder stuff. However, you will love to have one of these excellent tools that will come in handy at any kitchen and are going to serve you long and faithfully when used and maintained sensibly.