For most people, wooden cutting boards are one of the most used and beloved kitchen tools. Cutting boards are, in fact, one of the most actively used kitchenware and also often the most neglected ones. Despite the fact that cutting boards are put to rough use, we fail to give them care they deserve.
To ensure that our wooden cutting board stays beautiful for years, they need proper care and maintenance. Thus, in order to keep it looking great, and remain a long-lasting accessory in your kitchen, you need to follow some easy maintenance routine. In addition to cleaning the board after every use and disinfecting it timely, it requires oiling as well. Oiling a cutting board is essential to eliminate lingering odors and stains and keeps it from cracking.
Wood is the most popular choice for cutting boards because it not only gives a gorgeous rustic look but is also long-lasting and maintains the knife edge. However, hardwood cutting boards require a little love and care. Oiling is an essential part of maintenance for keeping your board sanitary, looking new and extending its life. Since most people are not aware of oils and substances which are appropriate for oiling cutting boards, we have listed here oils which are safe and products which must be avoided. Read further to know how to sanitize and keep your board looking beautiful for years to come.
Properly Wash and Dry
First, you need to wash your cutting board with soap and warm water. Make sure to properly scrub the surface to remove food particles. It is important to note here that wooden cutting boards must never be soaked in water or washed in a dishwasher. The natural wood is porous and can’t put up with heat and water. For disinfecting the board and removing stains or smells, you can use lemon juice, white vinegar, or salt. The acid in these liquids will neutralize the organic material. You may also use a weak bleach solution or hydrogen peroxide to clean the boards to protect against bacterial contamination. After washing the cutting board, dry immediately with a towel and let it air dry in a standing up position or on a raised rack with air flow.
Apply Cutting Board Oil and Board Cream
After cleaning and drying the surface of the board, next comes oiling. The purpose of oiling is to prevent any other liquid and moisture from soaking into the board. In addition to this, the oiling dry board helps in maintaining the shape of the boards as it prevents wood fibers from expanding or shrinking.
Start by applying food-grade oil on a completely dry surface. Make the entire board surface dripping wet by using a small towel or new paintbrush to spread the oil. It is important to leave it for some hours in an upright position, preferably overnight, so that the board properly soaks the oil. When the board becomes old or too dry, you may need to repeat this process twice or thrice. Once the surface is dry, apply a small amount of cream onto the board by using a soft cloth in a circular pattern.
How often to Oil?
In addition to regularly washing and scrubbingwith hot soapy water, it needs timely oiling also. This step depends on how often you use your wooden boards and your climatic conditions. Some people do it on a weekly basis, while other once a month or twice a year.
What products to use?
It is recommended to use food-grade mineral oil which is non-toxic and non-drying. While purchasing mineral oil, you need to look for the products that are labeled as “white mineral oil” because these are considered safe for human consumption. Moreover, you can also use Beeswax and Refractionated Coconut oil for. Beeswax is a natural wax produced in the beehives of honey bees and has a variety of applications.
What to avoid?
Vegetable oils such as olive oil, corn oil, and sunflower oil, should never be used to maintain a cutting board. Also, keep you cutting board away from varnish and alcohol. Though alcohol is a great disinfectant but is extremely drying.