Warning: Slicing and Dicing eye-candy ahead! When I first started cooking I quickly figured out that having a sharp knife was important to success in the kitchen. The first cooking class I attended showed me which knives work best for which purposes, and what to look for. Fast forward to last year, when I was taking online courses, and learned even more about kitchen tools. I’ve been pretty obsessed with cutlery since then, and I even have a Santoku tattooed on my arm! Hence, why I am very excited to share my review on this Senshi Kamikoto knife set, with you.
Before we get into the testing of this knife set, let me give you some background on this impressive company. Kamikoto makes Japanese-style knives that are crafted from high quality steel.
Knives made of Honshu steel have not been available outside of Japan up until recently. This Kamikoto knife set is quite the wonder to behold. When the boxes showed up at my door I was so giddy – excited to check out these tools. Then, I opened each box and stared in awe at the beautiful knives. Each blade has an immaculate finish, a strong beveled edge on one side, and a dark, matte handle.
When I worked up the guts to take them out of their beautiful wooden box, I noticed that they were different weights because of the sizes, but both balanced in the hand. The Chef’s knife is quite large, with a blade 10 inches long, but is not unwieldy. It has a bit of weight to it and seemed perfect for cutting large, hard items like the butternut squash I tested it on. The Utility Knife is very light, but can slice through anything. I definitely preferred it when slicing and dicing smaller or softer fruits and veggies. Mostly for the sake of better handling without needing momentum from the weight of the Chef’s knife.
And, because these blades are so stunning, of course they come with a display stand! This is how you let other cooks know that you’ve really invested in your procedure and cooking. I certainly feel better having this Kamikoto knife set out for all to appreciate, than to put them into drawers.
Now, for the cutting portion of this review. As I mentioned earlier, I was taking some professional online cooking courses and knife skills was one chapter. For one of our exercises we had to do every size dice, chop, slice, and Julienne cut, out of carrots. So, I took what I learned from that and applied it to testing these cuts on a variety of vegetables and fruits of different sizes, textures and densities. I shot A LOT of photos for you to see the detail in the cuts and how smooth each one was. But, I have also listed my experiences working with each item.
Kamikoto Knife Set: Chef’s Knife
- Butternut squash: I used this to peel, slice in half and chop the squash. For the larger cuts, it takes a second to get used to the one-sided edge, because it wants to curve into what it’s cutting. If you know this going into it, it’ll be easier to cut straighter lines. Other than that, the blade is supremely sharp and cuts through the hard squash, effortlessly. For the chopping, there are no issues, and the one-sided edge helps to push the cut pieces away from the blade as you go. The large blade was great for cutting thin slices and Julienne cuts of the squash, as if it were soft!
- Butter lettuce: On the other side of the spectrum, soft and airy lettuce can sometimes be smashed while being chopped or cut off of the whole head. With a couple of subtle back and forth motions, the Chef’s knife sliced through the fragile lettuce without smushing it or super visibly oxidizing the edges, which can happen with duller knives.
- Rice paper: Now, this one may seem odd, but if you have ever tried making rice paper bacon, you know that chopping uncooked rice paper is HARD! If you don’t have a good knife, you end up cracking the paper into unusable pieces. It can be very frustrating! For this test I ran 1-cm of the tip across the rice paper, then cut down, rolling the blade over the score and it was beautiful. The length of this knife really helps to get a full strip out of the paper.
- Avocado: Lastly, I wanted to see if this large blade was versatile enough to get the thinnest slices out of something soft. As you can see from the photo, the slices are oh-so-thin, consistent and this avocado was super buttery. All it took was a few up and down motions and it was effortless. Avocado roses for everyone!
Kamikoto Knife Set: Utility Knife
- Carrot: I used this smaller knife to peel, and do an assortment of cuts on a single carrot. Because the blade is nimble, it was not intimidating to use for more delicate or precise work. On the other end, even though the blade is small, it still cut through the dense carrot easily. I really enjoyed cutting the 1/8-inch Julienne sticks with this blade, perfectly.
- Tomato: I feel like we’ve all seen the infomercials with a weird knife or tool cutting through tomatoes in one fell swoop. That’s not realistic, or necessary. Cutting tomatoes should require a motion that goes both down and across, to get a uniform slice. The utility knife nailed it, and got thin slices, even from a very soft tomato.
- Lemon: I found that I really liked using this blade on the left side of the lemon to slice off thin pieces for zest/drinks. It was super sharp, really easy to work with on smaller items and cuts like this. Then I went for the hyper-thin slices, which sometimes can get messy with dull blades (again with the smushing!). But, in this instance, they were stunning.
- Green onion: I love topping Asian-style dishes with green onions! So, I thought it appropriate to try out some delicate angled cuts on one for garnish. The utility knife cut uniformly and completely through, which can sometimes be hard for small, fibrous veggies.
Kamikoto Knife Set: Conclusion
If you are looking to seriously invest in knives that will possibly outlive you, this knife set is a great choice. Especially, with their lifetime warranty! The price may be a little off-putting, at first, but they have options for everyone. After looking at their site, I found that you can get a great deal on a knife that is made-to-order! The Santoku from Kamikoto can be ordered ahead of time for a fraction of the price, at even less than some competitors of lower quality.
Most importantly, you can really feel the quality of the blades, and the sharpness is pretty incredible. I’m very excited to have these knives in my kitchen, and know that I will be using them again and again. Though, I certainly won’t be lending them out, anytime soon. 😉
This post is in partnership with Kamikoto, all words and opinions are my own. Posts like these help me to keep this blog going and more recipes coming your way!