A meat cleaver is a heavy, broad-bladed kitchen knife primarily used for cutting through bones and tough cuts of meat. It is characterized by its solid construction and weighty blade.
- Chopping and Sectioning: Meat cleavers are excellent tools for chopping through large cuts of meat, such as beef or pork, into smaller portions or specific cuts. They can also be used to section poultry or cut through ribs and joints.
- Bone Cutting: The heavy, sturdy blade of a meat cleaver allows for efficient cutting through bones, making it useful for tasks like splitting poultry or breaking down larger cuts of meat with bone-in.
- Smashing and Crushing: Meat cleavers can be used for tasks beyond meat, such as smashing garlic cloves, crushing ginger or lemongrass, or crushing hard ingredients like nuts or seeds.
- Tenderizing and Flattening: Meat cleavers can be used to tenderize and flatten tougher cuts of meat by pounding or flattening them, helping to break down connective tissues and create more even cooking.
- General Utility: Meat cleavers are versatile tools in the kitchen, suitable for tasks like crushing ice, breaking down hard-shelled seafood like crabs or lobsters, or even as a makeshift tool for splitting small bones or hard objects.