How do you sharpen a knife by hand?


Sharpening a knife by hand can seem intimidating, but with practice and patience, anyone can do it. It’s a great skill to have, as a sharp knife makes cooking easier and safer. In this post, we’ll walk you through how to sharpen a knife by hand, step by step.

  1. Choose the Right Equipment

To sharpen a knife by hand, you’ll need a sharpening stone. Sharpening stones come in different grits, which determine how coarse or fine the stone is. For beginners, a two-sided stone with a coarse grit on one side and a fine grit on the other is a good choice.

  1. Set the Angle

Before you begin sharpening, you need to set the angle. The angle is the degree at which you’ll hold the knife against the stone. A 20-degree angle is standard for most knives. You can use a guide to help you maintain the correct angle or use your intuition.

  1. Lubricate the Stone

It’s essential to lubricate the sharpening stone with water or oil before use. This will help prevent the knife from getting damaged and also ensure that the stone is working correctly.

  1. Start with the Coarse Grit

Begin with the coarse side of the sharpening stone. Hold the knife at the correct angle and place it on the stone. Move the knife back and forth across the stone, keeping the angle consistent. Make sure to use light pressure, and do not press too hard, as this can damage the knife.

  1. Switch to the Fine Grit

Once you’ve sharpened the knife on the coarse side, switch to the fine grit. Repeat the same process as before, moving the knife back and forth across the stone, keeping the angle consistent. This will hone the blade and create a sharp edge.

  1. Test the Sharpness

Test the sharpness of your knife by slicing through a piece of paper or a tomato. If the knife cuts smoothly without tearing or squishing the paper or tomato, it’s sharp. If it doesn’t, repeat the sharpening process until you achieve the desired sharpness.

In conclusion, sharpening a knife by hand takes practice and patience, but it’s a valuable skill that any home cook can learn. Remember to choose the right equipment, set the correct angle, use light pressure, and lubricate the stone before use. With these tips in mind, you’ll be sharpening your knives like a pro in no time!

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