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So I have recently been moving into the world of Asian cuisine, and I recently learned that the Chinese use a cleaver as though it is a chef's knife. Apparently, it is a great multitasker but requires a completely different technique set to use properly. Where do I go to find out about this?

Update I should mention that I am already highly proffiecent with a chef's knife. I was mainly looking for what I need to learn from scratch and what will carry over.

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4 Answers

up vote 4 down vote accepted

I found you an interesting .pdf. Also., youtube has video's.

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Thank you for clearly labeling the PDF link. –  Tim Gilbert Aug 10 '10 at 21:03
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That PDF link is invalid or damaged. Do you have another source? –  BobMcGee Jun 22 '12 at 3:13
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One difference in chopping is that you are doing less rocking on the tip than you would with a chef's knife. The edge stays more parallel with the cutting board. You still want to maintain the forward sliding motion while the blade moves down.

I like using a light cleaver for veggies, and find that it works better than a chef's knife with a small cutting board.

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One important thing to keep in mind is that the blade always stays against the knuckles of your opposite hand to control it. That is true with all knives but I find it is especially important with a cleaver. (Well probably except when you are doing giant hacking moves, in which case your other hand should be nowhere in the vicinity).

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+1 for the understatement! –  Arafangion Oct 4 '10 at 14:05
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Practice! In addition to watching videos, reading textbooks, etc... I would just recommend to use it often. Make sure you have a nice, heavy cutting board, too.

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