The cutting board is an integral item in any kitchen. On this surface, you cut up all of the ingredients you need to cook your food. There are several types of cutting boards available in the market now, and it might seem a bit perplexing on which type to choose.
The most prevalent types of cutting boards in the market include wood, pyroceramic, plastic, glass, and marble cutting boards. Everything on this list excluding wood is a nonporous surface, and some people prefer these types of cutting boards because they are easier to clean, and are dishwasher safe. However, wood is generally deemed more hygienic for use as a cutting board because it contains antibacterial properties.
Regardless of the material you choose, keeping the cutting board relatively germ free should be your biggest priority. It is therefore prudent to exercise the following guidelines in order to ensure that your cutting board remains safe when coming into contact with your food.
- How to clean your cutting board
Experts advise that you wash your cutting board in hot, preferably soapy, water after every use. Once you are done with the washing, you should rinse the board with cold clean water. Proceed to pat the board dry with regular kitchen paper towels.
If you wish to sanitize your board, then do so with a spoon of liquid bleach for every gallon of water. Pour the bleach solution on the surface of the board and ensure that every inch of the surface is covered. Let the solution remain in place for at least 10 minutes, and then rinse with clean water. Before use, ensure that the liquid bleach you use is unscented.
It is important to note that most nonporous boards such as those made from plastic, glass, solid wood, or acrylic are dishwasher friendly. However, laminated boards, and non-solid wood boards might crack when washed using a dishwasher. It is thus advisable to wash these types of boards by hand.
Many people have bamboo-cutting boards in their homes. For the safety and longevity of such a board, you should never place it in the dishwasher. Instead, wash it with warm soapy water, rinse, and rub some mineral oil over it.
- How to avoid cross-contamination
The best way to avoid cross contamination of food products when using cutting boards is by having two or more dedicated cutting boards. This means that you will use one cutting board specifically for raw meat, fish, and poultry, while the other will be for vegetables, other fresh produce, and breads. This way, the bacteria from the raw meats will not get into contact with the other ingredients that most probably will not require that much cooking.
In fact, it is even advisable to have a separate chopping board for fish, and another one for raw meat and poultry. This way, there is hardly any contact between the fish and poultry meat such as the chicken.
- How to replace worn-out cutting boards
In most instances, when your wood cutting boards scar or wear out, all you need to do is sand or plane them. This will help eliminate the scars on the surface of these cutting boards.
However, it is imperative to note that even the wooden cutting boards will eventually wear out, just like all other types of boards. Once your board has developed some grooves that are extremely hard to clean, irrespective of material, then it is time to discard the board. These grooves harbor enormous colonies of bacteria, and continual use of such a board will only expose your family to significant health risks.
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