Food & Drink

The best way to sharpen your kitchen knives is by using… a mug

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Alex Finnis
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First things first, this is not a ‘life hack’, because ‘life hacks’ are not a thing. I must’ve read hundreds of ‘life hack’ articles, and not one of them has actually changed my life.

We’re not claiming this little trick is new either – we definitely didn’t invent it – but it something that hardly anyone seems to know about, and one I use almost daily, so it’s genuinely useful for anybody who cooks regularly.

Basically, there’s a really easy way to sharpen kitchen knives using nothing but a mug. I find it works just as well if not better than a lot of knife sharpeners, and hopefully you already own a mug. Hopefully you own more than one, actually, but I bet one of them is one of those massive Sports Direct ones. There’s not a household in Britain that doesn’t own a Sports Direct mug, even if they’ve never bought something from Sports Direct. They just kind of appear in cupboards somehow, as if Mike Ashley’s breaking into your house at night and putting them there.

Every household in the UK owns one of these mugs

Anyway, let’s get to the actual trick. It’s really simple. First, you need to find a mug that has a rough rim around the bottom, like the one below. Then, what you do is you take your mug, flip it upside down and place it on the kitchen surface.

You want a mug that looks a bit like this (Image: WikiHow)

Next, you get your knife, and you hold it almost flat against the bottom of the mug – you just want a slight angle. Then you simply run the length of the knife along the bottom rim of the mug and repeat several times for each side of the knife.

Run your knife along the bottom edge of the mug, like this (Image: WikiHow)

You should start to see some metal-coloured residue appear along the bottom rim of the mug – these are the filings, so you know that it’s working. The reason this trick actually works is because ceramic is around three times harder than stainless steel – if it wasn’t then the knife would just cut through your mug, which would probably make you want to (justifiably) shout at me.

Here’s a short, 30-second video that shows everything in action:

 

And that’s it. Easy. Go home and try it later.

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Alex Finnis

Alex is the Editor of ShortList.com

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