Tomatoes are a bright and delicious food that’s perfect to use as an everyday cooking ingredient or just for eating on their own. Tomatoes beautifully blend the lines between vegetable and fruit, making them one of the most versatile foods available. Many home cooked dishes use tomatoes as a base, such as spaghetti Bolognese, and even when eating out you’ll find that tomatoes will form a core part of your meal such as an authentic Italian pizza.
However, although the end product is undoubtedly fantastic, getting to that point can sometimes be difficult. Knowing how to prepare tomatoes effectively is a skill, and there will always be questions raised. For instance, would you prefer your tomatoes blanched, and the skin removed, or are you partial to the more rustic flavor? Your answers to questions such as this will determine the way that you prepare your tomatoes.
However, there is one thing that we can be sure of. You are going to need to cut them! So keep on reading, and I will tell you which knife is best for cutting tomatoes.
Finding the Best Knife to Cut Tomatoes
It can be difficult to find a good kitchen knife that can easily slice through the tough skin of a tomato and also keep the soft interior intact. The bright color of tomatoes makes them immediately stand out as a focal point of any meal. If they have been cut with an inappropriate knife, then you are going to be left with a plate of tomato mush which is not appetizing to anyone.
It is possible to buy knives that are purely designed to cut tomatoes, but this seems like a significant expenditure when you can get the same result with a standard kitchen knife, coupled with a few tips and tricks.
What Knives Do You Have in Your Kitchen?
We’ve all seen those giant knife blocks with all manner of kitchen knives included, and maybe you have the option of many different kitchen knives to use. However, the standard working home kitchen needs only three knives to get the job done; a standard chef’s knife, a paring knife and a serrated knife. These three knives will be able to take care of all your cutting needs, including cutting tomatoes.
Cut Tomatoes with a Serrated Knife
The best knife you can use to cut your tomatoes is a knife with a serrated edge. It is probable that you have only used this knife before to cut fresh loaves of bread, but it does have other uses and preparing your tomatoes is one of them. Because your serrated knife wouldn’t have been used that often it will probably be one of the sharpest knives in your kitchen, it’s unlikely that the blade will wear down, so it will always be ready to go when you need it. So, why is a serrated knife so good for cutting tomatoes?
Shearing The Skin
One of the biggest problems people have when cutting tomatoes is getting through the tough skin. The serrated knife can shear the skin rather than slicing it, enabling you to get through it much faster and easier.
With other kinds of knives, you will likely have had to put a lot of pressure on the blade to get through the skin, and this is going to result in the delicate flesh of the tomato falling apart. With a serrated knife you won’t need to put this high amount of pressure on the blade; therefore the flesh will stay intact, and the knife will just lightly slice through it.
What to Do If You Don’t Have a Serrated Knife
If you don’t have a serrated knife handy there’s no need to panic; you just need to be a little bit clever with a general chef’s knife. The chef knife is going to be the best alternative knife for cutting tomatoes; who doesn’t have a cheap chef knife, right?
First of all, you need to make sure that your knife is sharp! Then, instead of going straight for the kill, you need to make a small score in the skin of the tomato before you cut it.
This score will act as a snip and help you to tear the rest of the skin apart. Using the score, dip your knife down into the flesh of the tomato and work your way through, this will cut the flesh easily and tear the skin from the inside out.
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