Knives don’t have to be intimidating. The right ones can make the cooking experience so much more enjoyable. Don’t get all freaked out when I say “the right ones”. By that I only mean, the ones that suit YOU best. Ones that fit in your hand comfortably, feel sturdy but not too heavy and have a sharp blade. You won’t feel like you have to work hard to cut stuff when you are using the right knife.
I love travelling and staying in rental places with a kitchen. I know I’m weird, most people think of vacation as including a break from cooking, but this is how I relax. And I usually bring my own knives. I’m not trying to be all pretentious, but it really does affect my whole experience if I have to work with shitty tools, so I bring my own.
I have had the same set of Global knives for almost 20 years and I still love them and use them everyday. My favorite is a big badass cleaver-kinda situation. Great for chopping veg, which I do a lot, and the wide flat blade is perfect for whacking garlic. I also have a serrated knife for slicing bread and stuff that is softer like tomatoes. My small paring knife is perfect for smaller jobs like taking the tops off of strawberries, opening packages (I know, it dulls the blade) and peeling potatoes. Not sure why, but I prefer to peel potatoes in my hand with a small knife. It just feels right, but as previously mentioned, I’m weird.
As far as care goes – don’t put them in the dishwasher, wash them by hand, don’t put them away wet, keep the blade sharp (less chance of cutting yourself with a sharp blade than a dull one), use the non-cutting side to scrape food off of the cutting board and don’t use them to open packages 🙂