How To Sharpen Knives

From www.foodfanatic.com, by Katie Goodman
How To Sharpen Knives

File 2 - Queso Blanco



This is a sponsored post on behalf of KitchenIQ. All opinions are the contributor's own. She was provided with a knife sharpener for review.

When Food Fanatic and KitchenIQ asked me to test out their new KitchenIQ Smart Sharp Electric Knife Sharpener, I was super excited – my knives are SO DULL and haven’t really been sharpened properly in…errrrr… years? Or ever?

I have been thinking for months that I should find somewhere to take my knives to get sharpened, so this was a great opportunity to get them sharpened and learn how to do it myself.

If you spend significant time cooking, you’ve probably heard how dangerous it is to use dull knives. If you haven’t heard that, you might be wondering: “Why? Wouldn’t a sharper knife cut worse?” Not exactly.  

File 1 - Queso Blanco

A dull knife doesn’t cut as easily as a sharp knife. It isn’t precise, causing the knife to slip and the cook to lose control while cutting, often putting hands and fingers in harm's way! I once spent the evening getting a finger stitched in the ER courtesy of a dull knife. It is no fun, folks.

Overall, I was thrilled with the performance of the Kitchen IQ Smart Sharp Electric Knife Sharpener.  My knives cut so much better now – I did a few before and after test cuts and WOW the difference! It was incredibly noticeable on the tomatoes, which cut like butter post-sharpening.

The user manual was a bit of a beast to read, but totally necessary and informative, so I’ve condensed some of the main points down to give you an overview of the functionality.

File 3 - Queso Blanco

Quick Start Guide

You should always read the user manual before operating any new kitchen appliance. Because I like having my own quick start guide to refer back to upon each repeated use, I’ve created this easy knife sharpening guide to serve as a refresher after the initial manual reading.

  1. Plug the unit in.
  2. Dial to 10.
  3. Dial to your selected knife style.
  4. Turn the unit on. TIP: don’t move the dial when the machine is on.
  5. Proceed with sharpening procedure.
  6. Turn the unit off after completing a sharpening procedure on a knife.

General Sharpening Procedure

When placing the knife into the sharpener, push the heel of the blade straight down into the slot.

Pull the blade straight out, from heel to tip, following the curve of the knife’s blade. You will need to pull the blade through 10-15 times (5-10 for serrated).

When removing the blade from the slot, do not pull it all the way out. Rather, lift it straight up once you get to the tip.

After the coarse sharpening, repeat the same process with the FINE sharpening slot, pulling the blade through this 10-15 times.

Remove the blade from the slot, lifting it straight up (rather than pulling it all the way out).

Knife Sharpening Tips

Always redial back to 10 before navigating to your sharpening angle.

This is like resetting to zero on your old school locker combination.  For example, if you’re sharpening an Asian style knife, dial back to 10 before switching to something else, serrated for instance.

Serrated knives are only sharpened in the FINE slot and should not be placed in the COARSE sharpening slot. You will perform only 5-10 pulls on serrated knives.

NEVER push and pull the knife back and forth in a sawing motion within the sharpening slot.

If your knives are damaged or very dull, start your sharpening on the COARSE slot, unless it is a serrated knife.

For regularly sharpened knives, you can skip the COARSE slot and performed maintenance sharpening on the FINE slot only. This is great if you spend a few minutes weekly, or even monthly, sharpening your knives.

You might encounter sparks. You will definitely encounter noise and vibration.

Win your very own KitchenIQ Smart Sharp Electric Knife Sharpener and a $50 Visa Gift Card to purchase ingredients!

Queso Blanco 

Queso Blanco Photo

My neighbors are convinced this is the best ever Queso Blanco recipe. I made it earlier this year for a block party and not a spoonful was left. It is full of fresh veggies and flavor and definitely not your ordinary queso recipe. It is perfect for game day because you can keep it warm in the slow cooker.

Queso Blanco Picture

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Queso Blanco Recipe

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Ingredients

  • 1 8 ounce package cream cheese
  • 32 ounces velveeta queso blanco
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 1/2 cups salsa verde
  • 2 ear of corns, cooked
  • 1 poblano pepper, or jalapeño
  • 3 roma tomatoes
  • 1 tablespoon fresh cilantro, chopped
  • 4 ounces fresh kale

Directions

  1. Cut the cream cheese and Queso Blanco into cubes. Add to a slow cooker on high heat. Pour in the milk and salsa verde. Stir to combine. Cover and cook until melted and creaming, stirring periodically. Turn the heat to low.
  2. While the cheese is melting, the corn off the cob. Add it to a cast iron skillet over medium-high heat and cook (dry, without oil) until it begins to roast and brown, about 3 – 5 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, remove the seeds and stem of the poblano and dice it. Add it to the pan with the corn. Stir and then cook an additional 3-5 minutes until corn has a grilled or roasted appearance.
  4. Dice the tomatoes; finely chop the cilantro and the kale. Stir into the melted queso.  Cook over low for 20 – 30 minutes, until heated through. Serve.

Notes

  • Use a poblano or a jalapeño depending on your personal heat preferences. Poblano peppers will be milder than jalapeños. Deseeding the pepper will also tame the heat without taking away the flavor.

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KitchenIQ Smart Sharp Electric Knife Sharpener

KitchenAid Slow Cooker

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