Andrew Zimmern Can't Live Without These Knives

It's no question that Andrew Zimmern knows his way around the kitchen. After all, he's a chef, author, and four-time James Beard Award-winning host of culinary programs like "Bizarre Foods" and "The Zimmern List" (via The Travel Channel). And though he could easily cut his way through pounds of meat and produce for an exceptional feast using a hodgepodge of rickety cutlery and a whole lot of culinary improv, Zimmern would much rather keep a lean arsenal of dependable knives at the ready. 

When asked in a YouTube video, "If you could only have four kinds of knives for the rest of your life, which ones would they be?" Zimmern — gasping "oh my gosh" at the question — was quick to respond with his picks. Because when you've been as immersed in professional cooking settings for as long as Zimmern has, you quickly learn which knives promote maximum efficiency, and which ones don't. 

These four knives are Andrew Zimmern's essentials

The four knives Andrew Zimmern can't live without? They are a serrated, filet, slicer, and chef's knife. Here's why each one is so essential and how you should use them. 

While commonly referred to as a bread knife, the serrated should not be pigeon-holed to one food group. It can do much more, per Cook's Illustrated. And according to Epicurious, this knife is great at splitting cake into layers and slicing through tomatoes and bell peppers — any foodstuff with particularly "slippery exteriors."

The filet knife is thin, long, and bendable, making it great for breaking down a whole bony fish into smaller, fleshier cuts (via F.N. Sharp). The premium knife company professes that filet knives work best for slicing fish and no other meat, which begs the question of why Zimmern chose it as a desert island pick, but that's when this next knife comes swinging in. Like a serrated, the slicer has a long, thin blade. But instead of serrated edges, it has either a pointed or rounded tip that's exceptional at thinly slicing red meat and chicken (as noted by Kamikoto).

Last, but certainly not least: the chef's knife. Featuring a wide blade that's typically 8 inches long with a curved and pointed tip, a good chef's knife is one of the most multi-purpose cutters you'll always want in your toolkit (via Fine Cooking). Delicate enough to julienne vegetables yet sturdy enough to disjoint poultry, chef's knives are one of the most versatile kitchen tools, per Kamikoto.

For those who wish to sharpen their kitchen skills, investing in these four knives seems like a step in the right direction.