Okay, I have (had) four knives to my name. I'm fine with that, really. One just died. The other three are no-names that for some reason we call "Job's Daughters knives," maybe because Job's Daughters was selling them — a paring knife, a bigger version of the paring knife, and a serrated bread knife. I'm cool with them.
The one that died was a Calphalon Contemporary 7" santoku. I liked it. Someone tried hacking a coconut with it and chipped the blade, so now I'm looking for another knife that makes me happy.
Difficulty: under $50. I love good-quality equipment and I'm willing to care for it; I'm just not ready to spend tons.
• vegetables: slicing, dicing, chopping, etc.
• sometimes cheese and fruit stuff
• *maybe* pineapple or a hard squash occasionally, but if you like a more delicate knife, go ahead and recommend it, because my Job's Daughters knives can deal with hard stuff. Or at least, I wouldn't cry too hard if they got hurt.
We never cut meat or deal with meat.
I don't have any predefined preferences. I liked the santoku, though the dimples seemed a bit gimmicky. Introductory research points to a nakiri style knife, but beyond that I don't want to poison the idea well. I'm totally new to putting thought into buying a knife, so of course I'm instantly obsessed and really looking forward to your suggestions.
If any more info can help, let me know and I'll be happy to provide.