{Jon Acuff} Bringing Dinner Back Week #6 ~ The thing about knives.

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Jon AcuffWeek 6 of the dinner challenge is here! After a pitiful showing by me last week, I’m back with a better record. And a new story about something I learned in the kitchen. Something I never expected. Something that surprised me. I’m talking about knives.

What we learned: Smart lessons about sharp knives

I’d love to exaggerate and say that I’m one of those husbands who regularly cooks dinner. I’d like to pretend that sometimes I just surprise the whole family with a soufflé I baked. Or that for our anniversary I put together some sort of seven course meal by hand. Seasoned with love.

But the truth is, I am a rank amateur when it comes to cooking. I can barely scramble an egg. I am lost in the kitchen. In college I once ate jalapeno poppers for three months straight. Then, I met E-Mealz.

This week I tried my hand at cooking dinner for the whole family. We picked the “Best Beef Tips” from our Publix menu and I got to work. I mixed all the ingredients. I managed the heat of the oven just so. I measured and poured and did the entire thing. Well almost the entire thing. My wife didn’t trust me with the knife.

The recipe called for stew meat but she had a piece of meat she wanted to just cut into smaller portions. When my wife watched me handle the knife she instantly had a vision of us at the hospital and me trying to talk positively about only having thumbs. So she distracted me with another task and set about doing all the cutting herself.

Then I noticed though that she wasn’t using our new knife that some dear friends gave us. (You have to be close friends to give a knife. You’d never give a stranger a knife, what kind of message would that send? Google it, it’s true.) I asked her why she wasn’t and here was her reply:

“Better the dull knife you know than the sharp knife you don’t.”

A play on the popular saying, “Better the devil you know than the devil you don’t know,” I was fascinated by that statement. But the more we talked about it, the more I understood her point. She loved the new knife. It was her favorite knife, but like any other new kitchen tool, she was easing into it. She was afraid to use such a sharp blade on the meat because she didn’t know how it would react. And she didn’t want to lose a fingertip.

A month from now she’ll probably use that knife on everything. A month from now that new knife will be part of the family. But for now, she’s got “sharp knife training wheels” on. Which surprised me, because as a kitchen amateur I didn’t know that my wife tended to ease into new relationships with new kitchen tools or gadgets. I always thought a knife is a knife is a knife. But I was wrong.

We care about our kitchen tools (and our fingers) much more than that!

Our favorite E-Mealz meal of the week.

We’re doing the Publix Meal Plan right now. We sometimes buy the ingredients one week and make the meal the following week. Our favorite meal in the last week was the aforementioned Best Beef Tips. They had ginger ale in them, which threw me at first but was actually really, really good. E-Mealz continues to surprise me.

Our dinner record for the week.

We went 5 for 7 this week. On Saturday night, I was flying back from the Dave Ramsey live event in Kansas City and on Thursday night I had a video shoot for the trailer for my new book. Next week though we’re going on vacation so I am shooting for a perfect 7 for 7.

How about you?

How many nights this week did you eat dinner with your family? Did you beat me?

What was your favorite E-Mealz meal?

What’s your favorite new kitchen gadget or tool?

2 thoughts on “{Jon Acuff} Bringing Dinner Back Week #6 ~ The thing about knives.

  1. heather

    The funny thing about this is that using a sharp knife is safer than using a dull knife. With a dull knife, you have to apply more pressure to cut, making it more likely that you’ll lose control and cut yourself. And a dull knife is more likely to slip because it doesn’t go into the food as easily. A sharp knife cuts more easily and so you apply less pressure, which means if you do slip, you weren’t bearing down crazy hard and will probably do less damage.

    Happy cutting! (vegetables and meat, I mean!)

  2. Jodi

    I’m hoping to buy chain mesh gloves to protect my hands as I am a klutz with a knife. Last summer, I wasn’t handling the knife correctly to get a pit out of an avocado and I stabbed my hand. It almost went through. And I was 20 weeks pregnant trying to cook a family dinner to reveal that we’re having a boy. Last week I cut myself. I scare myself.

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