Houchou (kitchen knife)   2015/10/30

Houchou means a knife for cooking. There are various types of houchou depending on each usage. Deba-houchou is a heavy and broad bladed knife for cutting off a head of large fish or a body together with bones. Oroshi-houchou is a knife for cutting a fish into three pieces or slices a fish into small pieces. There are also many houchous specially designed for cutting each specific fish such as special houchou just for blowfish, tuna, octopus or eel. Na-houchou is a knife suitable for cutting vegetables and soba- houchou is a special knife for soba, Japanese noodle. Sanntoku-houchou is a knife for general use.

Japanese traditional swords are very famous for their astonishing beauty and excellent sharpness. Exactly same thing can be said with traditional Japanese houchous.


Originally Houchou meant cooks who demonstrated their ways of cooking in front of high class nobles during Muromachi period (1336-1573), in the similar way as tea ceremony or flower arrangement.

Later, instead of cooks, knives themselves, used by such houchous, have been called as houchou.