For Christmas I received a new Hammer Stahl 5 1/2″ Santoku Knife, Japanese style with a short, general use, high-carbon German steel blade. Found ourselves touring around Jacksonville, Oregon with our friends, John and Cindy who were visiting from Wisconsin. As you all know we’re kitchen geeks so we had to stop in at Pot Rack, a kitchen store. Owners JoAnn & Steve are wonderful and we connected from the first time we met them. Four kitchen geeks, what could be finer?
On this particular weekend shortly before Christmas they had 5 1/2 inch Hammer Stahl knives on sale. Steve allowed Jim to handle it and it was love the moment he picked it up. We bought a second knife for our son, James, who is a professional Chef and his knives are very important to him. Chefs always carry their own knives and no one else in the kitchen touches another Chef’s knives.
So Jim has his new knife and I request his permission to use it. Then I start complaining because I have to wait on my prep because he’s using his knife. I’m dying without that knife; this new knife is literally like cutting through butter with a hot knife. (ALERT…more cuts happen due to dull knives than sharp knives!) I was used to using dull knives, like hacking at things with emery board. Yes, that dull!!!
James comes down from Portland to spend Christmas with us. After asking for permission to use Jim’s new knife you couldn’t get it out of James’ hands. Hey Dad I’ll make beef into cubes for you! Hey Mom, I’ll prep those vegetables for you. All the time extorting the virtues of the knife.
Weird thing is we all have different size hands, but all three of us were completely comfy with the tool. Hmmm…don’t know why.
So Christmas morning arrives!!! James opens his gift, but he has to pay us a penny first, so now he knows it’s something sharp, could it be THE knife? “SCORE, it’s my very own Hammer Stahl!” Later in the opening of presents Jim hands me a beautiful present, I’m thinking, heft and length of box, it’s a strand of pearls, gotta be. Jim says, “Oh Laura, you have to give me a penny first.” No, not pearls, they’re round and non-threatening. “OH, could it be my very own Hammer Stahl. Yippey!!!”
So we’re a happy family of three Hammer Stahls. By the way this isn’t a paid Hammer Stahl endorsement. We’re not big enough to be courted. We just like good stuff and want you to have good stuff too.
PENNY THING…my German upbringing dictates that you may not gift anything to a loved one that may cut or harm them, but if they pay you for it, they will be safe.