Watching a trained chef prepare food is both inspiring and nerve-racking. Their hands seem to fly as they chop, totally at ease with the razor-sharp blades they wield. For your average cook at home, though, it’s a different story; most of us slice and dice with caution, focusing on safety over flashy technique.
But do we really have to choose one or the other? The answer is a resounding no.
In our collaboration with Chicago Cutlery, we discovered that safety and technique go hand in hand in the kitchen, and — even more importantly — that a good tool can actually help teach you the proper technique.
When World Kitchen approached us to create something new for their cutlery brand, their sole question was at once simple and enormous: what new solutions still exist in the realm of cutting?
With the company so open to wide-ranging exploration, our team was able to explore every aspect of kitchen prep as it related to the knife – from material innovations to storage to sharpening.
Looking at personas and use scenarios, we identified their target users as busy, young professionals; they enjoy cooking daily, but don’t have a lot of time for it. Cooking trends and healthy recipes can be fun to try for them, but what they really love is entertaining and spending quality time together.
It became clear that these users were really in search of confidence in the kitchen.
To provide confidence and guidance, through proper knife handling, we played with reshaping the knife bolster. Through testing we found that cooks will shift their fingers down onto the bolster, where they should be for good knife handling and safety, if we provided a clear, intuitive touch point. Once their fingers were firmly on the bolster/blade, then using the tang for added control became second nature.
With hands out of the way, let the chopping commence!