Recently, my friend’s mother passed away. She was a home cook that could hold her own against any culinarian in the Crescent City, professional or otherwise. Having been a collector of new and old culinary knives, I asked my friend if she would mind if I could have one of her knives to add to my collection so her culinary spirit could live on in my kitchen. She was ecstatic at the idea! On my last trip to New Orleans, not only was I given her well used Santoku (to the right of the antique oyster knife on the top row), I was also excited to be given her favorite whisk, cutting board and mise en place bowl included in the care package. What a treat! What better way to carry on her mom’s culinary spirit than to keep her most used kitchen tools close at hand…and heart! Although a knife will no more make a person a better cook than an expensive baseball bat will make a person a better hitter, I would like to believe that an individual’s love of cooking somehow seeps into the well worn handle of their favorite knife…and we all know we have that trusty knife we faithfully reach for! So next time a loved one passes on to that great gleaming kitchen in the sky, don’t allow their cherished kitchen knife disappear into obscurity…acquire it, sharpen it, and allow all of those years of love enhance your future culinary creations.