If you are new to cooking, you may think that a cutting board is a cutting board, plain and simple. However, you may be surprised to know that there is far more that goes into the science of using cutting boards than you would think. Just like every kind of tool in your kitchen, there are high quality cutting boards and low quality cutting boards. The cutting board you choose to use while you cook could affect the longevity of your knives and other tools.
Is Glass Right?
A lot of beginner cooks are drawn to glass cutting boards. Glass cutting boards not only serve their purpose, they also add a touch of décor to an otherwise boring kitchen. Many glass-cutting boards come with beautiful patterns or artistic landscapes. However, just because a cutting board looks nice does not mean that it works well. Glass cutting boards can be very rough on your knives. Their hard surface and lack of give cause knives to dull very quickly. If you want to keep your knives sharp for as long as possible, you probably shouldn’t use a glass cutting board.
Considerations with Wood
The best option for cutting boards is wood. Wood cutting boards look nice, come in all shapes and sizes, and are soft enough so they will not damage the blades of your knives. When you cut into a wood cutting board, your knives are not met with an abrasive surface. The wood gives easily to the knife. This is why wood cutting boards usually show the most wear and tear. However, wear and tear on a cutting board is not a bad thing. One of the marks of a cook is the number of cut marks on his/her cutting board.
However, there is one downfall to purchasing wood cutting boards, and it is their sheer size and weight. While you can buy small wood boards, the biggest and best wood cutting boards are very heavy. If you need a large butcher’s block on which to cut meat, your wood cutting board could not only be very large, it could also be very thick. One option you can choose to offset the large weight of a wooden board is cutting boards made of synthetic materials.
Synthetic Cutting Boards
Plastic cutting boards are also very popular among cooks. There is a wider variety of shapes, sizes, and types of plastic from which a synthetic cutting board can be made. Plastic cutting boards are also not as hard on your knives as glass. However, they are still not as good on your knives as wood. Another downside to plastic boards is the fact that they can stain. Juices from meats and vegetables can seep into the cut marks on your cutting board and leave a permanent discoloration. However, if the look of your board is not a concern, plastic can still be a great option.
There are also many different style options when it comes to choosing a cutting board. Many people like to purchase cutting boards that can easily attach themselves over your sink. This way, you can cut your fruits and vegetables literally right over your garbage disposal. Any part of the food you do not wish to use can then be very easily transferred to the garbage disposal in your sink with just a swipe. Another simple element of some cutting boards that goes a long way is built in grooves. If your cutting board has grooves along the edges, they can trap any unwanted juices and keep them from running off of your board and onto your counter.
As you can see, there are many different options for you to consider when choosing a cutting board. Take your time and make the purchase that will be best for you.