Processed wood is usually stripped-off of its naturals oils that keep it healthy. Thus, if you prepare to use a wood cutting board for your cutting needs, you must learn how to treat a wood cutting board. This simple process will help bring life back to your board to prevent cracks, bacteria build-up, and warping, which can significantly shorten its lifespan.
Upon purchase of your wood cutting board, you’ll need to season or oil it right away. You can also oil your boards after use, just before storing them. It ensures that the wood cutting board stays nourished and not dry. Dry wood is prone to cracks, so try to avoid it at all costs.
Seasoning Your Wood Cutting Board
Cooking utensils can be more challenging and Learning how to treat a wood cutting board is pretty straightforward. Here’s what you need to do:
Prepare Your Materials
Prepare your wood cutting board, cloth or paper towel, your preferred oil, and your workstation. First, place your wood board on a flat surface. Use a non-slip mat or cloth to keep it still while seasoning. Give your oil a quick microwave to make it runnier. This way, it can easily glide and cover all nooks and crannies of your board. Coconut oil is the best seasoning option for wood cutting boards.
Pour the Oil onto the Wood Board
Pour a generous amount of oil onto the board, covering one section at a time. Make sure you get into all curves of the board. Also, follow the natural grain of the wood so that the oil can be better absorbed.
Rub the Oil onto the Board
Use gentle yet even pressure to rub the oil into the wood cutting board. Use your cloth or paper towel to do so. Make sure to spread evenly to prevent clumping. You can make a circular motion or follow the grains as you rub the oil all over the board.
Let the Oil Set
Repeat steps 2-3 at least twice, or more, depending on how much oil you want your board to absorb. You can never over-oil your board, so no worries. If the wood cannot absorb oil anymore, the excess amount will accumulate on top, which you can quickly wipe away. After you’re satisfied, let the wood board rest for about 4-6 hours. Afterward, give it a last swipe before use or before storing it.
Choosing the right seasoning oil is as important as the entire process on how to treat a wood cutting board. The oil allows you to enjoy a nourished and sanitized cutting board for better food preparation. It also prevents bacteria build-up that might result in spoiling your meals.
The market offers various seasoning oils you can choose from. But before you decide, keep in mind the following considerations:
Avoid Using Oils with High Unsaturated Fats
Oils with unsaturated fats oxidize and become rancid quickly. Thus, they leave your boards exposed, not protected, from elements that can spoil your food. Unsaturated fat also tends to smell foul over time and leads to a clumpy surface, which can be unhygienic when you try to use it in cutting your food.
Use Coconut Oil
Coconut oil contains high levels of medium-chain triglycerides and high saturated fat. Thus, it does not do rancid at all. This organic oil is also non-sticky and does not clump even when exposed to high temperatures. Another advantage of coconut oil is its microbial properties that prevent bacteria from breeding into your wood boards.
When to Season Wood Cutting Board
After learning how to treat a wood cutting board, the next step is to keep the board in pristine condition. So, when do you need to re-season your cutting board?
- Uneven patches tell signs of drying. Thus, take a few minutes to re-season your board to bring it back to life.
- A simple water droplet test can also tell if you need re-seasoning. Pour a few droplets of water into the board. If it absorbs them, then it’s time to season it again. If the droplets stay on top, the board is still hydrated.
- Stains, discoloration, and foul smell are indicators that the board needs seasoning asap. However, before you do, make sure to disinfect first. Foul smell means bacteria build-up. So try to clean it thoroughly first before seasoning.
Woodcutting boards are popular in most households. It’s very durable and can last a lifetime, especially when handled properly. One of the maintenance routines you should never take for granted is seasoning your boards. The oil keeps your board nourished and protected from cracking and warping. Thus, knowing how to treat a wood cutting board properly is essential so that you can enjoy using your cutting board for generations to come. Know more about cutting boards.