While the craftsmanship of making knives has evolved, the materials used to make the knives have not changed over decades. Many different types of steel are used based on how hard one wants the blade to be, how sharp one intends the blade to be etc. but steel has been the material of choice for blades. Ceramic knives made out of zirconium dioxide present a first viable alternative to steel for making kitchen knives.
“Ceramic knives definitely have some advantages over traditional knives that are made out of steel. They do not absorb and transfer flavor from one item to another. They are also harder than steel and will retain the sharpness for a longer time compared to a steel blade.” says Lisa from BestKitchenKnivesHub, a review site for best kitchen knives.
Ceramic knives do not rust, are easier to maintain and store than traditional steel knives. They are non-magnetic in nature and also do not conduct electricity at room temperatures. Zirconium dioxide is first pressed in a desired shape to form the blade. Then the blade is heat treated to very high temperatures, which causes it to harden. The blades are second only to diamonds in hardness. Skilled craftsmen uses rotating wheels coated with diamond dust to forge a cutting edge on the blade.
These advantages of ceramic blades also come with some disadvantages. Ceramic is brittle in nature and so it requires more careful handling and can chip if used to cut hard objects or dropped on a hard surface. Due to this they are not suitable for chopping through frozen foods or cutting bones, etc.
Using ceramic knives as an exclusive solution may not be viable due to its limitations. Also making serrated knives from ceramic is a challenge. Even for people who adopt ceramic knives, they will have to carry some steel knives in their kitchen and use them from time to time.
Some of the top knife brand are only just warming up to the idea of offering ceramic knives in full sets. But ceramic knives are definitely here to stay. Will the ceramic knives take over the kitchen or will people prefer to stick with the tried and tested steel knives they have gotten so used to. Only time will tell.
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