How to care for your cutting board

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Recent scientific studies by the University Of Wisconsin-Madison, Food Research Institute have concluded tests which proved that bacteria die quickly on wood, but thrives on glass and plastic cutting boards.

Three minutes after wooden cutting boards were coated with various bacteria, 99.9% of the bacteria were dead. However the same tests on plastic showed

baterica living and thriving, even after placed in a dishwasher. Care Of Cutting Board: After each use, scrub the board with detergent and water. DRY IMMEDIATELY! Rub a little oil such as mineral oil, vegetable oil or sunflower oil on all surfaces and put away. Mineral oil works best as it has a long lasting effect which keeps boards from drying out. Never soak your board or put it in a dishwasher.

**DO NOT USE** furniture oils, lemon oils, tung oil, Danish oil or Murphy's Oil soap as they may become rancid or tacky. To freshen a board, rub a citrus wedge over the surface from time to time.

Storing: Store the board on edges or ends or if stored flat, turn several times a week. This lets board breath evenly on all sides.

Never store your board adjacent to a heat source. New Boards: There are two enemies of wood, water (soaking) and drying out. If you want your boards to last years the secret is in the sealing of the end grain on the ends of the board and the end grain of juice groves. Use a small bottle of mineral oil (16 oz.) and a 2" x 2" square of paraffin (canning wax) or beeswax, shave it into the mineral oil.

Heat the oil and wax in a microwave for 6-8 minutes until the wax dissolves into the oil. If you do not have a microwave use a double boiler. Never met paraffin over a burner as **PARAFFIN IS FLAMMABLE**. When in solution, apply to all board surfaces with hand or rag while warm. Take the block of paraffin or beeswax and rub it into the ends and groves of your board. Repeat every six months or so. If you neglect your board and you notice a small crack starting on the end, fill crack with wax. Restoring a board: An old board can be brought back to life. Wash the surface and let the water remain on the surface for 15 minutes to raise the grain. Take a single edge razor blade and pass over board surface perpendicular to the board surface, scraping with the grain to remove raised grain. This is faster than sanding and will leave the board very smooth, if it is a maple board. Seal board as above. REMEMBER: A little soap and water to clean, wipe dry, oil frequently. POSTED BY: Jim Bodle 12/92, 11/94 Submitted By JIM BODLE On 11-22-94

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