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Tips on Cutting Board Maintenance

by Katy Lindamood

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Wood cutting board

Cutting boards come in many different shapes and sizes. A cutting board can be made of several different materials including glass, wood and plastic. Each type of cutting board offers different advantages and challenges in their care and maintenance.

Maintaining Your Cutting Board:

  1. Wood. Wooden cutting boards are perfect for vegetables, but meat should be cut on a plastic board. The reason for this is that the bacteria from raw meat are very difficult to sanitize from the scratches in a wooden board. After cutting vegetables on a wooden cutting board, it can generally be cleaned with just a damp cloth and mild soap. If the board is especially dirty, warm water and a 3 percent solution of hydrogen peroxide can be used. After washing, pat your wooden cutting board dry with a cloth and allow it to air dry on the counter. Make sure to dry the board standing on its end so that all sides dry evenly, doing so will help prevent the board from warping. If the board gets heavily scratched, it can be sanded smooth again. After sanding, wipe the board down with a food-grade mineral oil.

  2. Plastic. Plastic cutting boards are best for cutting meat and poultry. They are easy to sanitize and are scratch-resistant. The scratch resistance of the cutting board is ideal for items with high levels of dangerous bacteria, such as raw meats. After cutting on a plastic board, it can be sanitized by using a solution of 10 cups water to 2 tablespoons of bleach. Scrub the board with a light dish detergent; then allow it to soak for an hour before rinsing. Plastic cutting boards are warp-resistant, and they can be put away damp if necessary.

  3. Glass. Glass cutting boards are generally unsuitable for use with a high-quality non-serrated knife. A glass cutting board can easily dull even the best knives but are excellent for use with serrated knives, as they are difficult to scratch and easy to sanitize. Glass cutting boards can be sanitized by using a plain dish detergent and wiping the surface down with a clean sponge. They can be stored in a cabinet. They can be put away wet, since they are immune to warping. The main advantage that glass cutting boards have over plastic models is that they are usually very attractive, so they can be left out on the countertop as an accessory until needed.

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