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I got two knives as gifts...and I have questions

La Dolce Vita | Sep 23, 200511:13 AM

(Note: I'm moving this from the "Not About Food" board)

A friend of mine went to Japan brought back a Kyocera ceramic knife. Since the package is almost entirely in Japanese (a language I don't happen to speak), I can't read the directions. From the pictures,I can see I shouldn't use it for hard items such as squash, but that it works for small fruit (apples and oranges) and slicing bread. What other things does it work well for? How should it be stored? What about sharpening it?

A relative of mine gave me an Alaskan ulu knife. It's shaped in an arc, like a mezzalune. I haven't yet taken it out of the package. Is it even worth trying? Can it out-perform, say, a good chef's knife for certain tasks? It looks a bit primitive and unwieldy.

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