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A knife used for cutting foods served as a main course such as steak and chicken. The knife usually has a blade that is 4 to 6 inches long and varies in thickness. Depending on the manufacturer, the blade may be serrated or straight-edged. It is common in Europe to use a straight edge while most steak knives used in the U.S. are serrated. Since serrated knives cannot be sharpened, they require less sharpening maintenance than the straight-edged blade, but eventulally the serrated edge becomes dull and requires replacement. To lengthen the life of the serrated blade, wash the knife by hand so that dishwater detergent, which can dull the sharp edge, will not affect the cutting ability of the blade.
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