A chef’s knife is an all-purpose knife that has a curved blade edge that allows a cook to make precise cuts by making a rocking knife motion. It also called a cook’s knife or French knife because it is the most commonly used knife in the kitchen that has a general use or purpose. The common size of Chef’s knives ranges from 6 to 12 inches long.
The paring knife is small knife with a plain blade edge that is generally used in peeling fruits and vegetables. It is also used for intricate work such as deseeding peppers, deveining shrimp and preparing garnishes. The common size of paring knife ranges from 2 ½ to 4 inches long.
Bread knives are used in cutting breads and pastries which have distinct serrated blades. The serrated blade allows slicing soft breads without crushing it and cutting crunchy crusted breads without crumbling for better food presentation when served. The common size of bread knives ranges from 6 to 10 inches long.
There are two basic types of meat knives, the carving and slicing knife. The carving knife is mainly used in slicing meats that have bones like poultry dishes and roasted or smoked larger cuts of meats. While the slicing knife is designed to make more precise and thinner cuts which has a flexible blade. It is longer and narrower than the carving knife and has a serrated blade.
A cleaver is a rectangular knife that is generally larger than any type of kitchen knife and is also known as the chef’s knife in Chinese cuisine. The general purpose of a cleaver is to cut meats into smaller portions or for other meat preparations.
The boning knife is used to remove bones from large cuts of meat in food preps and serving meat dishes. It has a flexible blade which allows effective bone separation by getting into small spaces especially in the joint areas.
These knives are mainly used in fish preparations which have blades that are more flexible than boning knives. These are generally used to fillet all kinds of fish and most commonly used in Japanese cuisine.