THE DAILY GRIND – HOW TO BE THE SHARPEST TOOL IN THE SHED!

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By Elisa Cirene

A tradesman is defined by his tools. In the world of the commercial kitchen the tools of the trade that define a chef are their knives. These are not the common implements purchased at Kmart or a cheap online site; these are jealously protected, prized and cared for personalised items that every chef guards closely.

That their knives are sacred is ingrained in every chef and something Steve from Knife Sharpening Melbourne understands and appreciates from his many years working professionally in hospitality.

From the ripe age of 14 Steve started a holiday job at a local club where he was introduced to the mechanics of a commercial kitchen. Bitten by the travel bug he began working and travelling, before studying to be a professional chef at William Angliss Institute of TAFE. With experience in hip gastro pubs and microbreweries as far afield as Uluru and Kakadu, his adventures finally took him to Europe and work in the Netherlands.

Returning to Melbourne he eventually decided to ditch the grind of the commercial kitchen and pick up the knife sharpening grindstone. All those years as a chef made him appreciate the importance of sharp knives to working effectively in the kitchen.

Steve will tell you that sharp knives are safer than blunt ones — you can work a sharp knife with complete precision and ease, whereas blunt knives are prone to slipping.

Knives have a special place in our kitchens for those of us who love to cook and often come with a history. Steve says there’s no greater satisfaction that seeing the delight on customers’ faces when he has restored a block of knives that was a wedding gift or reconditioned a vintage keepsake from
the motherland.

Knife Sharpening is a regular stall holder at Slow Food Melbourne Farmers’ Market. 2nd weekend of the month at Happy Receptions, 199 Sunshine Rd, West Footscray and 4th weekend of the month at Spotswood Kingsville RSL, 59 The Avenue, Spotswood.

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