Why a Good Pocket Knife Is Absolutely Essential in the Kitchen

February 24, 2020 Home By Photo by The James Brand
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This is Chef’s Staples, where professional chefs dish on the gear they couldn’t cook without. This week: Chef Jeremy Hansen of Fork in Philadelphia, PA.

James Beard semi-finalist Chef Jeremy Hansen helms the kitchen at Fork in Philadelphia, serving up hyper-local fare prepared with technique developed under the legendary Gray Kunz. His menus are gastronomical incarnations of things are not always as they seem, with dishes that front as standard American fare, but go a step further (think mussels with mole, or A5 Wagyu with persimmon). Hansen is also a gear nut — the chef moonlights as a photographer and filmmaker on top of his day job — and runs a non-profit called 509Cooks, a first-responder organization that deploys chefs to emergency situations and disaster zones to serve up food. From a sturdy pocketknife to a world-famous pepper grinder, these are the things he couldn’t cook without.

The James Brand “The Carter”

“An easy-to-carry-around-for-everything tool. Good for breaking down cardboard boxes, cutting twine, opening up caviar tins, opening up sous vide bags and for any other thing you don’t want to use your chefs knives on.”

Heart Whisk

“Lightweight and great for emulsifying warm sauces on the fly. It reaches all the edges in a sauce pan and is great for just about everything that needs whisking — like quicker froths, whipped creams and vinaigrettes. Highly recommended for a cooks tool kit.”

Binchotan Charcoal

“I use this every day as a water filter. Its charged molecules attract impurities like chlorine and lead to make water healthy taste fresh. It’s also eco-friendly. You have to boil it every two weeks and after a few months you can add it to your konro for grilling meats.”

Peugeot Pepper Grinder

“Probably the most used tool on our hot line during service. Freshly cracked peppercorns release volatile oils for fantastic aromatics and is the best way to get the highest medicinal properties from the peppercorn.”

19 Tools That Pro Chefs Can’t Cook Without


There are no gear testers more rigorous than the commercial chef. Here are the kitchen tools five pro chefs can’t get enough of. Read the Story

Note: Purchasing products through our links may earn us a portion of the sale, which supports our editorial team’s mission. Learn more here.

Will Price

Will Price is Gear Patrol's home and drinks editor. He's from Atlanta and lives in Brooklyn. He's interested in bourbon, houseplants, cheap Japanese pens, and cast-iron skillets — maybe a little too much.

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