Kitchen Tools 101: What Is An Oyster Knife?

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You can cut bread with a chef's knife. You can try to cut tomatoes with a dull knife. You can cut pears with a paring knife if that tickles your funny bone. But there aren't a lot of tools in your kitchen you can use to open an oyster other than an oyster knife. We've seen sad displays of screwdriver-on-mollusk violence. Don't do that. So what about the oyster knife makes it perfect for opening oysters?

Oyster knives come in several shapes and sizes, each of which are ideal for opening a different size or shape of oyster — remember, oysters really run the gamut. For instance, a medium oyster won't need as long a blade as a large one. Tailoring the knife to the specific kind of oyster will save your wrist from fatigue and your oysters from possible mangling. The knife handles are designed for the grip-and-twist motion of opening an oyster and at least one side of the knife is typically sharpened to easily sever the muscle that connects the oyster to its bottom shell.

You don't need four kinds of oyster knife, but you do need one good sturdy one (it will very likely last a lifetime) or else you can't make any of these spectacular oyster recipes:

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