I have seen Japanese knives being sold at high prices in the UK. They should work very well. However, do you really need those expensive knives? In Japan, there are many good knives at affordable prices. Among them, I personally would recommend Kai Seki Magoroku Akane, a Santoku knife with a blade length of 165mm. Kai kitchen knives are reliable and reasonable compared to those from other famous Japanese knife brands. Let us find out why they are favoured over others!
Is Seki Magoroku a Good Brand?
Seki Magoroku is a leading kitchen knife brand produced by Kai Corporation, founded in 1908. It was named after a renowned swordsmith, whose name has been handed down for more than twenty generations. Seki, where the headquarter of the company is located, is the city worldly famous for its knife industry.
The reason why the city of Seki is specialized in knives goes back to the Kamakura period, the era when the samurai began to take control of the country. It was at the end of Kamakura period that good clay, iron sand, water and resources for high-quality charcoal needed to create Japanese sords were discovered in Seki. There, excellent Japanese swords were produced for the samurai. Therefore, the art of Japanese sword making has been succeeded to one generation after another, and now sophisticated knives can be produced in Seki. The Seki Magoroku series from Kai Corporation carries the phrase “keeping the swordsmith’s belief: the sword which won’t break or bend but will cut well.”
Why Kai Seki Magoroku Akane?
The safety-conscious packaging of Seki Magoroku Akane is sturdy and requires scissors to open.
This model offers good sharpness at a low budget price. It is suitable for those who find expensive Japanese chef knives a bit burden to buy but do not want to compromise on sharpness. New technology has been adopted for the skid processing and blade attachment to achieve a sharp cutting edge. Kai Seki Magoroku Akane is also perfect for those who do not want to spend a lot of time on maintenance. The rust-resistant triple-layer stainless steel makes the knife dishwasher-safe. Sounds perfect, isn’t it?
Then, let me explain why this knife was able to achieve high functionality and a low price at the same time. They focus heavily on the blade part and use high-quality stainless steel, while the handles are made of high-performance resin. With such a high-quality stainless steel material, a wooden handle is often attached in the traditional way. Actually, the same steel materials are used as those used in Kai kitchen knives in the higher price ranges. But with Kai Seki Magoroku Akane, they have succeeded in reducing the price by using resin. Even though the handles are made of resin, they have a reasonable weight and no inferiority to wooden handles. Moreover, resin handles are resistant to corrosion.
What is the Most Versatile Japanese Knife?
The wide blade with a tip makes Seki Magoroku Akane versatile for use as an all-purpose knife to cook Japanese food.
If you are to start cooking real Japanese dishes, the first thing you may need to get is a Santoku knife. Santoku is the all-purpose knife most often used in Japan. It is said that 98.4 % of Japanese who cook at home own Santoku*. Santoku combines the best features of a vegetable knife and a beef knife. The width of the knife is wide so that it is suitable for cutting root vegetables or julienning vegetables. Also, it has a long straight part of the blade, which can be parallel to the chopping board, making it smooth to push cut. Additionally, the fine tip makes it easy to make small cuts. But the spine of the knife is sickle-shaped towards the tip, which means it does not have a protruding end. So, it is safe and easy to handle.
*Based on the research by Bellmaison Seikatsu Style Kenkyusho (Bellmaison Life Style Laboratory) from 17 Feb. to 3 Mar. 2016.
Best Choice for You!
Have you ever tried Kobe beef? If not, you may be missing out on life! Please try this savoury, tender and sweet meat. A sharp Japanese knife is perfect for slicing highly marbled Kobe beef!
If you are to try cooking Japanese food a little more seriously, or add some healthy Japanese diet to your daily life, buy a Santoku knife first. Kai Seki Magoroku Akane has excellent performance for the price. It is my top recommendation when you don’t want to spend a fortune on knives but still want something sharp and versatile. Zakzakka will send you 100 % authentic products directly to your home in the U.K. Kai kitchen knives are popular products with reasonable pricing in Japan. Hurry to Zakzakka while stocks last!