Originated from the early Latin word ‘culter’ which simply means knife, this apparatus is essential in preparing, serving and eating food in the Western world. It comprises mainly knives, fork and spoon and because of its durability, it is commonly made from metals mainly stainless steel or silver.
HOW TO CLEAN CUTLERY ?
In general, cutleries should be washed, rinsed and wiped dry thoroughly and immediately. Stainless steel cutleries are graded “18/8” that comprise mainly materials made from chromium and nickel which are not 100% stain or rust resistant.
Prolonged contact with certain food and acids such as eggs, tomatoes and vinegar can cause staining on your cutlery. As such, it is important to wash them immediately after use. During the washing process, use only non-corrosive detergent and water. Subsequently, after rinsing them, make sure that there are no traces of remaining food particles or detergent as these can badly damage the cutlery due to the chemical reaction. Lastly, it is strongly discouraged to soak your cutleries overnight and similarly after rinsing, be sure to dry thoroughly with a soft cloth.
Here are several reasons for the formation of stains and pits on cutleries:
1. Traces of detergent on the cutlery which are not completely rinsed off.
2. Failure to completely dry the cutleries after rinsing, leading to rust and pits.
3. In rare cases, hot grease or fat from meat can also leave stubborn rainbow stains on the cutleries.
You should refrain from using any polish or dip to remove present stains because the chemicals in these solutions will etch the stainless steel.
Instead, squeeze some lemon juice or vinegar onto the stained area, wiped it with a sponge or cloth and rinsed the cutlery thoroughly.
Always remove any food particles from the cutleries and immediately wash them after use. Although silver plated flatwares are highly versatile and easy to maintain, never wash silver plated flatwares with stainless steel ones because a chemical reaction will form, causing the silver ions to be transferred to the stainless steel, thereby causing discoloration. Similarly, wash them with non-corrosive detergent and thereafter wipe them dry completely to minimize the chances of them rusting.
One of the advantages of wooden-handled cutlery is its durability and with proper care, they can last for decades!
Remember to only wash these utensils by hand and not with a dishwasher because the heat and detergent from the machine will damage the wooden frame in a few cycles. Simply wash them by hand by using non-corrosive detergent and warm water and afterwards, dry them completely with a towel. Failure to dry them completely will result in the residual moisture being absorbed into the wood thereby making them swell and crack.
To preserve its condition and appearance, rub a small amount of baby oil onto the wooden frame with a soft cloth once a month. This will prevent the wood from drying out and cracking.
RE-SHARPENING AND POLISHING YOUR KNIVES
Having to work with a dull blade requires more pressure to slice the food and thus increasing the chances of injuring yourself.
The best and easiest method is to use a sharpening stone because it removes the least amount of material so it does not accelerate its depreciation value. There are 2 sides on the stone: the coarse side versus the fine side whereby the former is meant for shaping and the latter for honing.
When using a sharpening stone, always start off by submerging them in water for 10 minutes. This prevents the stone from drying out and making the sharpening process more fluid. Next, place your knife at a 16-18-degree angle and stroke your knife, only in one direction, against the coarse part of the stone for 10-30 times (depending on how blunt the knife is.) Afterwards, flip the stone over and continue stroking the knife in one direction.
On the other hand, if you have been using your knives for a long time, you’ll notice that the blades have become thicker thereby making the sharpening process difficult. As such, seeking professional services is highly recommended.