Everything You Need To Know About Cleaning Your Cutting Board
Every cutting board material has its own special way that it requires to be cleaned. Some cutting boards are very low maintenance and can be simply tossed in the dishwasher while others need a bit more attention after every use. Certain boards such as wood, can last you a lifetime with proper care and can be used as heirlooms to pass on though generations but you must take the time to take care of it. Food borne illness attacks over 110,000 people in the United States per year and most cases could easily be avoided if proper cleaning measures and cross contamination prevention methods were utilized. Clean your cutting board thoroughly every time you use it to assure it remains a helpful kitchen tool for you.
Wood Cutting Boards
Wood boards bring such a rustic elegance to your kitchen that people don't seem to mind the extra time it takes to clean them. They must never be submerged in water unless you really want a warped board and you must remember to use a clean paper towel to dry them instead of a germ filled kitchen towel. Washing them with warm soapy water and rinsing after every use is what is required however, if you are cutting meat on your board you should take a few extra steps as well. Vinegar or Hydrogen Peroxide make excellent disinfectants. Either can be applied and then rinsed away. Vinegar must not be used on a bamboo board. For sanitizing, a simple diluted bleach solution with water, sprayed on and then rinsed off will assure your board to be bacteria free. Always store your board horizontally after cleaning until dried completely through. Laying a wood board on its side will cause moisture to move toward one area resulting in warping. Depending on how often you use your cutting board you will want to season it before it gets dried out to help seal the grain. This will protect your board against bacteria and against cracking.
Plastic and Silicone Cutting Boards
If you own a plastic or silicone board, one of the reasons you probably purchased it was for its convenience. Either of these boards can easily be put in the dishwasher which will take care of the washing and sanitizing for you. Don't have a dishwasher? Not a problem. Either board is easily washed with warm soapy water and the same diluted chlorine bleach solution used with wood board is perfect for sanitizing these boards as well. These boards have a non porous surface so bacteria does not have the opportunity to be absorbed into the board but you still must take precautionary measures to make sure that the surface of the board is clean and sanitized.
Glass and Marble Cutting Boards
Glass and Marble are both wonderful cutting surfaces that are easily cleaned and although some may tell you to go ahead and put either in the dishwasher, neither one, especially glass is recommended. They are both very easily washed off with soapy warm water and glass should always be inspected for any nicks or cracks. Knives can sometimes wear on the glass causing tiny pieces to break down which would result in pieces of glass getting into your food. Putting these boards in the dishwasher can lead to damage so it is advised to simply wash these surfaces by hand.
Your cutting board is essentially the foundation in your kitchen where you prepare many meals for people you love, constantly acting as the building block for hundreds of great memories. A little bit of extra care with your board will assure it's pro-longed life with many meals to come.