20 Cooks, 20 Knives: This month, we're taking a close look at a chef's most important tool: her knife. We asked 20 cooks, amateurs and professionals, to share their favorite knives and the stories behind them. While chef's knives are featured prominently, no two are exactly alike, and there are also a few surprises.
Profession: Marketing and Communications at R. Murphy Knives
City: Medford, MA
Technically speaking, Emma Furman runs marketing and communications at R. Murphy Knives, the company her family bought back in 2009. But as with any small business, she wears many hats — and even spent two weeks working in the Ayer, MA, factory. Emma and her family pride themselves on continuing the tradition of quality craftsmanship begun in 1850 by Robert and John Murphy. 166 years later, everything's still made in the U.S.
What is your go-to knife? The R. Murphy Jackson Cannon Bar Knife.
How long have you had it? Four years.
Does your knife have a name? The Jackson Cannon Bar Knife. We collaborated with Jackson Cannon to make the only knife specifically for bartenders. Jackson is the owner of The Hawthorne and bar director for Island Creek Oyster Bar and Eastern Standard.
Why did you choose it? It's designed for bar work, mainly with citrus, but it also makes a great all-around kitchen knife.
Do you sharpen it yourself or pay to get it sharpened? It doesn't need to be sharpened often because it's made with a high-carbon stainless steel, but it can be sharpened with a whetstone. I also send knives back to the factory for sharpening. They'll sharpen knives there for anyone for around $5 a knife.
Where do you keep it? On a magnet primarily. It also fits into our brand new Murphy Board and is held in place by a magnet. So it's great for travel (picnics, tailgates, camping, etc.)
Are you possessive about your knife? Is anyone else allowed to use it?I'm not really possessive about my knives, unless they're being mistreated. Knives should never be placed in the dishwasher and sometimes people forget that.
What's the last thing that you made really well using your knife? I mostly use it as a paring knife for cutting up veggies (broccoli, cauliflower, Brussel sprouts) for roasting, or to cut up avocado to make guacamole for taco night!