Wood Cutting Board and Butcher Block Care and Maintenance

Most wood cutting boards and chopping blocks are produce of solid hardwoods. Woods such as bamboo sheets, birch, maple & teak are very popular for the construction of cutting boards. There are three different types of board construction: Flat-grain : this type is made by gluing boards with the materials side-by-side (like on kitchen curtains tables or other furniture). These boards FG BOARD expand side to side. They may get larger in the summer (if there’s moisture in the air) and dissove in the winter (when the warmth from your furnace dries out the surface). Edge-grain : this type is made by gluing boards of the same width together face-to-face, so the surface has the edge of the boards showing. These boards expand vertical, like gym flooring or wooden truck beds. End-grain : this type starts off as flat materials panels that are cut across the wide materials to the desired thickness of the board and then glued face-to-face unveiling the ends of the boards. This gives it a unique checkerboard look. It also makes a great cutting surface as the blade blade cuts into the end fibers which decreases cut marks and splintering.

No matter what construction, all need care in order to give you many years of use. The most important tips are: Keep your board clean. Do not let it soak in water or said in the dishwasher. Keep your board well-oiled/seasoned.

After each use, wash your wood cutting surface with a mild dish soap and domestic hot water. Rinse well and dry with a cloth. Then allow it air-dry completely (bacteria die when they aren’t kept moist). To sterilize the surface, you may want to erase your cutting board with white vinegar after use. Vinegar useful against salmonella, E. coli and staphylococcus. You can apply it with a paper towel or, for usability, have a aerosol bottle filled with vinegar handy in your kitchen. ALWAYS CLEAN THE CUTTING BOARD SURFACE THOROUGHLY IF YOU’VE CUT UP FISH OR HEN.

When chopping garlic herb or onion and cutting fish, getting some food odors on your board is inescapable. To remove these odors, you can wipe your board with coarse salt, of lemon, or preparing soft drinks. Allow it stand on the board for a couple of minutes, then erase off the surface. Rinse well and give it time to dry.

DO NOT soak your boards (or any other wooden utensils) in water or they’ll crack and warp! DO NOT place them in a dishwasher to clean them. Because of the way most cutting boards & butcher blocks are made (gluing items of wood together) doing this may cause your board to fall to pieces!

To prevent staining and to keep food odors and bacteria from developing on the surface, keep your board well-oiled. Use an oil that can be applied repeatedly, such as vitamin oil. Vitamin oil is clear, tasteless, odorless, safe around food and will fill the wood pores. Stay away from olive, fruit and veg oils, or animal fats, as these oils can go rancid over time. Be sure your board is clean and dry, then erase the oil on your cutting board in an even layer using a clean, soft cloth or paper towel. Wait for it to soak into the wood (for at least several hours or overnight works too! ). Add more oil if necessary if there are dry spots. Wipe/buff off any excess oil with a clean, dry cloth. When you get your wood cutting board or butcher block, you may want to do this once a week for three weeks and then once per month for 3 months. From then on, once per month, or more often if you use your cutting board extensively, should do just fine. End-grain boards require more oil than the flat-grain or edge-grain boards as the oil goes deeper into the end-grain fibers. REMEMBER YOUR BOARD WANTS TO BE OILED!

After your board has been master, you can also use a beeswax/oil mixture (1/2 tsp. of beeswax microwaved with 1 cup of vitamin oil for 45 seconds applied to the board while it’s warm) every few months for a water-resistant surface. This protects the wood from wear and tear and provides it a longer life. (You can also wipe a small block of hard beeswax at an angle across your board surface and edges & massage it into the board with your hands. This basically water-proofs the surface).

To freshen up your cutting board, in between seasonings, cut a fresh of lemon in half and wipe it onto the surfaces of your cutting board.

Even with this care, Do not allow drinks to stand on your cutting board for extended time frames. Erase water, juice, brine and the juices from fresh meat off your board as soon as possible to prevent it from soaking into the wood, which can cause the cutting board to expand, the wood to ease, and the potency of the glued joints to worsen. Even using a good steel scraper or spatula will help keep the cutting surface clean and sanitary. Scraping the surface can remove 75% of the moisture.

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