Cutting board questions...

desertstephMarch 15, 2011

I've been wanting to get a new cutting board. the one I have is about 5x7"!

Most of the boards I see are wood or plastic - I don't want either of those. I don't think. They did have one that said it was bamboo.

on my trip to W they had some made of 'poly' and some by 'mainstay' that didn't list what it was made from. They also had a glass one. I'm leaning toward a glass one but I'd sure hate to drop it!

My sister (her dh) uses plastic ones (maybe poly) and doesn't seem concerned - she says she just puts it in the dw to clean it up good.

Any recommendations? Do you think plastic is safe?

I could keep the little glass one just for meat (I eat so little of it) and get a bigger one for veggies (what I use one the most for).

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I used to have a poly/plastic one. It had a handle hole in one end that was really convenient, and I did put it in the DW. But, I got rid of it because the knives made cuts in it and the plastic slivers were on my wash cloth so I figured they were in my food too.

I bought a bamboo one from a kitchen store, and wondered what kind of glue was holding it together, but it didn't say. Then I read something the other day about the processing of bamboo to make furniture & flooring, and it has a lot of undesirable stuff in it.

I also have a glass one, and have had it for years, since about 1984. I love it and have never dropped it. It's the only thing I'll cut raw meat on. It's just not my favorite for using the food chopper - it's deafening.

    Bookmark   March 15, 2011 at 8:49PM
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I have 3 cutting boards.
The plastic one has a hole in it with a grating, and it sits on one of the sinks. It does not like hot pots, so you cannot set one down on it. And, it has a sway back, some melted spots where I put down a hot lid. I'll soon get rid of it.

There is a boating product called STARBOARD. Look it up if you want a plastic one.

My second one is a 2-3 inch thick wooden one which belonged to my mother, and it is about 15 x 15. I keep it on the dining table to set hot pots on it. I love it, it has 4 feet on it. I bleach it and leave it in the sunshine. Sometimes I wash it in the dishwasher.

The third one is a pyrex which has a bumpy surface on one side, and a smooth side on the other. It has rubber corners on it, and I usually stand it up on the counter tops under the upper cabs. I don't want to leave it out, because it does collect water under the rim, and I like to keep it dry and clean. A friend has one similar, which she uses for pouring drinks and that sort of confines the mess. And she sets candles on it sometimes too.

I cannot recommend anything. What I like is my Silestone quartz countertops, which are antibacterial and don't freak me out about germs as much. If you "tenderize" meat, only a wooden board will work. And any surface where chicken goes, it needs degerming anyway. So something that can be sanitized is what gets my vote.

Is this what you mean?

    Bookmark   March 15, 2011 at 9:06PM
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"the knives made cuts in it and the plastic slivers were on my wash cloth so I figured they were in my food too. "

I was afraid of something like that. besides I don't want to be running a sanitize on the dw for 1 cutting board!

ML - yes, the info you both posted here is what I was looking for - your views/experiences with the different ones.

like, at the store I was thinking 'well, bamboo should be good...' but then I thought I'd better check it out first.

now the bigger regular wooden ones might be a good thing to have on the counter next to the stove/oven for a hot pan! I have laminate counters and even if/when I redo them, they'll just be new laminate!

a piece of that silestone quartz might be a good idea! maybe a local fabricator has a cut out piece of it I can get for cheap. I'll check around.

I really do love a regular wooden board - and it would probably even be ok for veggies - but not meat. once meat was on it I'd never want to put veggies on it again!

my little glass board also has those rubber/plastic corners - and bumps on one side. which side should one use to cut on? I'd think the smooth side.

will look up that product you listed and see what it is.

seems weird that it's not easier to choose a cutting board!

    Bookmark   March 15, 2011 at 9:56PM
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You should get a restaurant grade white cutting board. They are the only kind other than wood that won't ruin your knives. All others do dull them. To sterilize after use just squirt some Arm and Hammer bleach cleaner on it and let it set a minute and rinse. It will be perfect. Here is a link to the kind of cutting board...c

Here is a link that might be useful: sanalite cutting boards

    Bookmark   March 15, 2011 at 10:04PM
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I use a small wooden board. Longer then wide with handle hole on one end. When it gets yucky I will just burn it. Get a new one. I think this is maybe my third one in 30 years or so.I have done this all my life and never had a problem. I just wash it with hot water and let it dry in drainer and put it back in the drawer.

Thinking about glass it would dull knives but if a person insists a glass microwave dish would work. They are always in the thrift stores.

Those restaurant boards are neat.

    Bookmark   March 15, 2011 at 10:22PM
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trailrunner - thx! is that what you use? I'd only need a small one - the 12x12 would be plenty for me!

shades - I laughed when I read you'd 'just burn it'! way to go! you could probably sand it down a bit and start over...

I still have the glass turntable from my old mw. interesting idea - I'll try it!

    Bookmark   March 15, 2011 at 11:03PM
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I have a lot of birdy food/water bowls, and I wash them in the dishwasher. I also take them outside and leave them in the sunshine for hours at a time, to kill any bacteria. I seldom run the sanitizing wash in the DW itself. Also, putting the cutting board in the sunshine after bleaching it is a backup to being bacteria free.

Having a good chunk of wood alongside the stove is the best place to move a hot pot safely. Having a small section of butcherblock unfinished on one side is probably the way I'll set up my new range one day. I'll have the long side of countertop in stainless, which can tolerate hot pots too, but I think that is thinner than the butcherblock, and transfers heat to the underlayment, with who knows what effect. So I will plop pots on the wood instead.

Steph, I keep the bumpy side down, the smooth side up on the Pyrex board.

    Bookmark   March 16, 2011 at 10:17AM
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Yeah, I have a glass one and in some ways it's great, but it's heck on knives and it's kind of fingers-on-the-blackboard when you chop on it.

If I had good knives, I wouldn't ever use it, but it's nice to be able to throw it in the DW.

    Bookmark   March 16, 2011 at 10:26AM
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I work for a company that used to manufacture and sell cutting boards. Glass cutting boards will dull your knives, they are really only useful as a trivet. If you choose plastic and are concerned about meat contamination get two boards, one to use for meats (look for NSF certification) and one to use for all other foods. Choose 2 different colors, or some are marked with a meat logo vs a vegetable logo. The meat board should have a juice groove around the edge, which will prevent meat juice from dripping on your counter. Plastic boards might warp in the dishwasher.

Wood boards (my preference) require some upkeep. You can wash with soap and water in the sink, and deep clean by liberally sprinkling with salt and use 1/2 a lemon cut side down, to scrub the surface with the salt. You can also sand off stubborn stains. Wood cutting boards are usually made with laminated strips of wood glued together to form the board. They should be treated periodically to prevent delamination and to keep the wood from drying out, by coating it with food grade mineral oil (available in the pharmacy for a buck or two, or for lots more as cutting board oil - make sure the mineral oil is marked food grade or for human consumption). Apply a liberal coat, allow to soak in for several hours and wipe off the excess. Wood boards should never be washed in the dishwasher. Aside from aesthetic and environmental concerns, bamboo is no different from any other type of wood cutting board and should be cared for in the same manner.

    Bookmark   March 16, 2011 at 12:05PM
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yes those are the kind I use . My DS1 got them from his restaurant supply for me. I have 2 huge ones and one small. I do all my prep w/o meat first. Then I do the meat last. I also use the Arm and Hammer bleach spray ( it is for showers LOL) and it works great. I just place the cutting board in the sink and spray lightly. I then complete my cleanup and run hot water over the cb and my dish cloth at the same time. This does 3 things at once, clean/ sanitizes the cutting board,same for the dishcloth and the sink too ! All done and no odors or germs. Always dry plastic items of ALL kinds in the air. Never ever put away anything that is plastic if it is at all damp. Promotes bacterial growth. So I prop up the cb on the counter till the AM and they are ready to go. c

    Bookmark   March 16, 2011 at 4:09PM
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We have a separate red plastic one for meat use only. Other things generally get cut up on a wood one. Mt favorite is the mezzaluna, which is a curved chopper and a bowl-shaped board. You rock it back and forth to mince things up finely. We use it for fresh herbs.

    Bookmark   March 16, 2011 at 5:14PM
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Jay, I like the image of the messaluna and the bowlshaped board. You make it mighty hard resisting such a fine tool. I love nice kitchen equipment.

    Bookmark   March 16, 2011 at 11:45PM
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I used to own a restaurant and State inspectors preferred that we use Sanalite-type cutting boards rather than wood. For home use, I like the flexible, color-coded plastic boards shown in the link below. They prevent cross-contamination and are easy to use and keep clean.

Here is a link that might be useful: flexible, color coded cutting surfaces

    Bookmark   March 17, 2011 at 2:41PM
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This is the exact mezzaluna (Italian for half moon) we have:

    Bookmark   March 17, 2011 at 4:50PM
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OH Jay. Loving that. I would definitely look for some thing like this.

This is funny. Yesterday while waiting for the four feral kitties we took down to vet for spay and neuter we had 7 hours to waste. Two 100 mile trips is more than we wanted to make so just stayed down there.We shopped thrift store to use up some time. LOL I found a brand new little wooden cutting board. Not a knife mark in it. Perfect size for my drawer. Looks like the old one will be heading for the trash burner. A whopping 50 cents.

    Bookmark   March 18, 2011 at 11:15AM
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Jay, is that a photo you took of your messaluna, or is it an ad? If an ad, what store? Something like Chef Catalog, or maybe Williams Sonoma?

A friend works at a restaurant supply store, and it is one of my favorite places to shop. So I will check there before ordering one.

I love good knives, good pots, nice hardware and kitchen utinsels. Don't care that much for cooking, though. I had to do the cooking as a child (when my grandma was not staying with us), and I grew up hating to cook. I always wanted to do the gardening.

    Bookmark   March 18, 2011 at 5:25PM
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I have three different sizes of the Epicurean boards (I think I got at least two of them at Bed, Bath & Beyond). I absolutely love them. They are thin and easy to store and totally dishwasher safe with no warping or problems. I've tried glass cutting boards but I don't like how they feel under your knife.

I thin we've had one of them for at least 6 or 7 years and it's still in great shape with almost daily usage and washing.

Here is a link that might be useful: Epicurean cutting boards

    Bookmark   October 11, 2012 at 3:54PM
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Annie Deighnaugh

One white plastic board with a groove around it that is used solely with raw meats. The rest are wood boards for cutting veggies and such. Research done on recovering harmful bacteria from natural wood boards proved that it is difficult to do...far more difficult than from plastic materials. So use a wood board.... easy to clean, easy on your knives and very safe.

Here is a link that might be useful: Wood boards and bacteria

    Bookmark   October 11, 2012 at 6:11PM
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Tom, regarding the Kobi Block, that brick pattern certainly is striking, and the website shows some othe beautiful cutting boards. The prices, especially in the larger sizes are unbelievably good. I just ordered a John Boos 24x18x21/2 but I'm tempted to send it back and try one of larger sizes like a 30x20x3 end grain in the Kobi block. That size in John boos would run 3 times as expensive.

I cannot find anything on the web about the quality of this company however. If anyone has experience w/ Kobi Blocks I would live to hear about it

    Bookmark   October 12, 2012 at 9:42AM
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I have given up on wooden cutting boards. I can't stand the thought of meat or chicken blood soaking into them. I tried to keep them clean, used lots of bleach which only softens the wood if you let it soak. Put one in the dishwasher once and it broke in three parts, right along the seams. I now have a large white plastic cutting board I love-I wash it nearly every day, first a coat of bleach then put it in the DW. Comes out beautiful.

    Bookmark   October 14, 2012 at 6:17PM
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Here are some beautiful boards MADE HERE !

Here is a link that might be useful: vermont company

    Bookmark   October 16, 2012 at 10:52PM
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What an interesting thread! I am going to look into several of the products mentioned here.

I have several bamboo, which I use for everything but meat. I use the flexible plastic mats from Ikea for meat, and toss them when the scratches/grooves get too deep.

I grew up in a glass cutting board family, but hate glass now--it's loud, and definitely dulls the blades.

    Bookmark   October 27, 2012 at 11:44AM
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I have a wood cutting board, which just happens to be from the company Eatrealfood linked to. It's about 20 years old and still going strong.

At some point in the 90s, there was all this talk about how bad wood cutting boards were, and I bought one of the white plastic boards. Then, as AnnieDeighnaugh points out, it was found that wood cutting boards were not deathtraps full of bacteria and I went back to using mine.

Now, the wood one is for fruits and vegetables and the plastic one is for meat and poultry because it can go in the dishwasher and probably get cleaner there than with my handwashing. The wooden one gets scrubbed after every use in hot water and air dried.

No one's told me they've gotten food poisoning from eating at my house, so I think I'm okay.

    Bookmark   October 27, 2012 at 1:15PM
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