I had a block of time on Saturday where I would normally have grabbed the laptop and begun to work on a post. Unfortunately, TTAG was under a DDoS attack on its servers, and as we at TTAK operate a teeny-tiny corner of the same arrays we were knocked out as well. Thing 2 was playing quietly in the family room, so I decided to entertain myself nearby in the kitchen.
I had already tried my hand at cubing a pineapple with the CRKT Halfachance Machete. I figured, “Why not try it with the smallest blade I carry?” This happens to be the Alan Folts designed CRKT Minimalist. Could this little 2″ Wharncliffe bladed neck knife even do a functional job?
I won’t rehash my whole machete effort, you can read it here. I will say in summary that the Halfachance did a perfectly functional job with a slight adjustment to my slicing technique. Since what is considered quite sharp for a machete is only moderate on a kitchen or EDC knife, I had to use an exaggerated drawing motion as I sliced. But the Half got the job done. At 14″, the blade isn’t much longer than a very large chef’s knife. I believe the CRKT Chancinhell which has a straight rather than parang shape would do an even better job as it has a less radical shape.
This brings me to the Minimalist. I got this nifty little knife at CRKT’s Chopfest at last year’s Blade Show. I have been carrying it as a backup knife when I guide, and I have might possibly have considered wearing it in places like the library where it is frowned upon by authorities but lack any sort of security screening. But I would never actually do such a thing.
I had to rotate and pry open the cut when chopping off the stem, but other than being awkward, it didn’t require special effort. The skin was easy to separate from the flesh, and I could remove strips that approached 4″ with practice by cutting from both sides.
I also tried removing strips of pineapple, and then slicing the skin, but this was less efficient than the above.
After returning to the first technique, I next removed the large pieces of flesh from the core. I even diced the core…because why not?
I have tested other knives, though not the Halfachance, by julienneing the pineapple skin. I wasn’t sure how this little blade would do. While I needed to put some effort behind it since the knife’s weight contributes nothing to the slice, the sharp blade did just fine as far as the results achieved.
I then sliced and cubed the flesh. Not a problem at all. I was able to maintain a solid grip on the Micarta scales. They were grippy when impregnated with pineapple juice.
In the end, while it is a less than efficient tool for pineapple processing, the results achieved were perfectly acceptable in a non-presentation setting. I hope that by demonstrating a task that borders on the extreme, you can feel comfortable that it can handle the more mundane. If I had to choose between the two for food processing, I would go with the Halfachance, but this test clearly shows that the CRKT Minimalist is a little knife that punches above its weight.