Misuzu Kamagata Usuba 165mm (6.5")
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Usuba in Japanese means thin, which is an appropriate description of this knife designed for preparing vegetables, where a thin blade is very important. When cutting firm vegetables such as carrots, it is important that the blade cuts, not split, as can often happen with thicker knives. Kamagata refers to a semicircular blade head that is suitable for more precise work and precise cutouts. This style of Usuba is most popular in Japan around Kyoto, where the diet is more heavily based on vegetables than elsewhere in the country.
Japanese cuisine emphasizes the importance of seasonal ingredients, for which there is a specific term "shun". Shun is the essence of the season, food that can be enjoyed locally and seasonally and there is an emphasis on creating dishes that use such ingredients in cooking all over Japan. For the preparation of fresh and quality seasonal food we, of course, need a knife so sharp and precise that it minimally damages the cell walls of vegetables and avoids reducing the quality, taste, and appearance of the prepared dish. And this is where Usuba comes into play - the single bevel blade enables precise chopping of vegetables on the kitchen board, and due to its height and straight edge, it can also be used for peeling larger tuberous vegetables, such as daikon, into long and thin slices. This process is called “katsuramuki” and is one of the most difficult and complex Japanese cutting techniques.
The Misuzu Kamagata Usuba 170 is not a completely traditional representative of its kind, as it is a hybrid - the blade is modeled after the Usuba, with a rounded Kamagata tip, but it is double bevel and very thin. It is extremely rare to find this type of knife sharpened on both sides, so this Usuba is very close to our hearts and we recommend it to all fans of delicious vegetable dishes!
The blade is made of VG-10 steel, is 165 mm long, and is very, very thin and sharp and mounted on a traditional Japanese handle, which is polished in the traditional Urushi way. Due to its thinness and flat blade, Usuba can also be used for special Japanese cutting techniques, such as Katsuramuki or “shaving” vegetables.
|Hardness (HRC scale):||60-61|
|Overall length:||310mm (12.2")|
|Blade length:||165mm (6.5")|
|Spine thickness:||2.2mm (0.08")|
|Weight:||120g (4.2 oz)|
|Handle length:||130mm (5.1")|
|Handle type / wood:||Japanese / Urushi|
Use & Care:
- Handwash in warm water and towel dry
- Use a sharpening stone (not honing steel!) to sharpen your knife
- Do not cut frozen foods and meat bones
- Do not put the knife in a dishwasher
- Read our comprehensive guide on proper Maintenance of Kitchen Knives.
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