Monday, December 17, 2007

Bushcraft Knives in the Kitchen

Now, I'm sure testing knives in the kitchen is nothing new to anyone who reads this blog but I'd like to share my views all the same.
I've been using the grohmann style Cold Steel Canadian as a kitchen knife almost since I bought it and it has continued to preform brilliantly. So much so that Agi is quite happy to use it for general cooking chores. Although it is not as sharp as when I stropped it for working on wood it keeps a very sharp edge and I just touch it up on a crock stick about once a fortnight. It is great for slicing up vegetables and raw chicken breast and as it is stainless still looks as good as new.
At the weekend though We cooked a roast chicken and it came complete with a lot of gristle and neck - spinal cord I think. This was fairly stiff and at first not an easy task to remove. However I just picked up my Leuku and voila! One neckless chicken.
I also used the Leuku when carving the chicken. As it was fairly moist I didn't get many neat slices yet all the meat came off with ease and I was able to cut through the legs and wings effortlessly. The blade was undamaged by all this but ass it is carbon steel I had to wash and oil it carefully after use.
Kitchen use is always a good way of testing blades, firstly because if they fail here then they really would be no use in the woods. Food and cooking can be a fairly major part of woodcraft - be it cooking on a trip, making sandwiches or having a barbecue in summer. When you read Nessmuk and Kephart carefully you realise that their knives weren't bushcraft tools like Mors Kochanski's but hunting and kitchen tools first and foremost.
As such I'm continuosly on the lookout for a middle size knife to fill this role. It would be one to stay in your pack and only for use on food. Think "picnic knife". The light field knife from Idaho Knife works would seem to fit the bill (3/4 down the page) but something a little cheaper could be either a fixed blade opinel paring knife or perhaps something like this from Queen cutlery?


American Bushman said...

Well written.

Those fishing knives at Idaho Knife Works sure look nice huh?

I don't need to be looking at more knives however...


Great post.


Anonymous said...

Samuel, have you looked at www. ? For a medium sized knife take a look at the Wood Jewel line. As for a hatchet/small axe, I prefer the Wetterlings. They can't be beat for price vs. function. I own and use the small axe and the medium axe on a regular basis and they hold up remarkably well and are a dream to sharpen. Good luck on the skills. Jeff aka bushpuukko from Broken Arrow, Oklahoma USA

Paulo @ undercurrents said...

We are in the middle of producing an online video series about an A-Z of Bushcraft & Survival skills and we are seeking your help. The series will be released when we launch our internet TV channel at in Spring 2008. The channel is not for profit and will highlight a range of social and environmental topics.

We are asking people with your skills and interest in the outdoors to watch our online series and review an A-Z of Bushcraft on your blog or website. Bushcraft is a growing movement and we hope to play our part in promoting the knowledge of ancient skills. But we can’t do it alone so please helps us spread the word of

If you would like to include your own Bushcraft video player on your blog or website, please drop me an email on and I will send a small text file for you to easily embed.


Paul O’Connor
A-Z of Bushcraft

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