To peel fruits and vegetables like apples, potatoes and squash with ease, use a paring knife or a serrated peeler -- both are sturdy and easy to control. To begin, cradle the food in one hand and insert the tip of the knife directly under the skin with the other. Then, starting at the top, use the knife to peel away the skin in a circular direction. Work the blade away from your hands to keep them safe. As you turn the food in your hand, use your thumb to give the knife some leverage.