Orange Coast Magazine

Taste of O.C. | Priscilla Mayfield on food


With a whetstone, and frequent honing with a ceramic steel, I manage to keep my knives in pretty good shape. (My husband especially is very good with the whetstone.) From time to time, though, I really crave a professional sharpening—and wow is there a diff afterwards. Hardly anything is as heavenly as a really sharp knife.

It’s been difficult for me to avail myself of the few sharpening options in O.C. for a single, deal-breaking reason: They require leaving my knives overnight. No way! I ask you: WHAT am I supposed to do without my beloveds for a whole night?

However, last year, farmers market peregrinations took me to Yorba Linda’s compact Saturday market, which is worth a visit for a number of reasons, including produce so hyper-local some is grown right there in The Land of Gracious Living. (It takes me back to the early days of O.C. farmers markets, when it wasn’t uncommon to find backyard gardeners selling their wares alongside the bigger growers.) But, knives: Every Saturday, Junhao Chen parks his gleaming-white Sharp Edge Knife Sharpening van on site. Professional sharpening while you wait! Or in this case, shop for fruit & veg. I filed this find away, planning to get back up North with my lovelies.

But now, an excellent development. Sharp Edge has come (closer, at least) to me, working Sundays at the Great Park Farmers Market. So the weekend is totally covered, knife-sharpening-wise—the easy-access central location of the Great Park is a good complement to Yorba Linda’s spot on the county’s extreme edge.

The other Sunday I took some knives to the Great Park and left them with Chen while we ate still-the-best TJ’s Woodfire Pizza(don’t miss the new Prima: diced potatoes, bacon, chives, and a runny egg in the middle; $14) and did some vegetable provisioning. So easy! My go-to 10-inch Global chef’s knife, which had been languishing in the block for months, cost just $8.95 to sharpen, as did my trusty Dexter off-set serrated bread knife, restored to sailing through the densest crust with ease. I’ll be bringing the rest of the gang on my next visit. I got a mild reminder from Chen to go easy on the steel—only very light pressure is required. I predict this won’t be a prob, going forward, because my knives will be so righteously sharp they’ll need only the merest whisk before use.

Click here for Orange Coast's searchable farmers market guide.

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