The art of slicing ham requires not only an expert hand, but also tools that are up to the task, such as a good ham holder that precisely holds the piece and a sharp knife that helps us to obtain perfect slices.
In Enrique Tomás’ Glossary we give you the details of the famous ham knife, its characteristics and its history.
What a ham knife looks like
A knife that will allow us to obtain the best gift of a piece of ham, a slice of exact thickness, which melts in the mouth and lets us taste all its nuances.
A good cutting technique together with a professional knife will guarantee a clean, non-stop and smooth cut. In a ham knife we will find the following characteristics:
- Long and thin blade, between 35 and 40 centimetres long.
- Flexible and narrow, with a width of 2-3 centimetres
- Very sharp tip finish, although there are varieties with a rounded tip.
Although these characteristics are the most common, there are also varieties. For example, we can find knives of different blade lengths if it is a knife to cut ham or ham shoulder, but this does not influence the quality of the knife as such.
Another variety that we will find is the type of blade, which can be smooth or alveolate. The cracks in the alveolate leaves allow air to enter during the cutting process, ensuring that the slices do not stick to the knife.
As for flexibility, we must say that this is a crucial point when choosing a good knife, since its degree of flexibility will allow the knife to adjust as much as possible to the shapes of the ham.
This will result in a smooth and fine cut. Anyway, remember that we must never confuse the term flexible with weak, because a professional ham knife must always be very resistant. Finally, we must not forget to mention how important it is that this tool is handled with great care.
The ham knife must always be very sharp, otherwise it could be even more dangerous when cutting ham. For the same reason we recommend using a protective cover when not in use. If you want to know how to use it and how to keep it sharp, take a look at our blog:
- How to choose a good ham knife
- How to sharpen a ham knife step by step