A handy cutting board is a key attribute in both professional and home kitchens. Here’s a quick guide to choosing the best cutting board for your hobby kitchen, with an insight into materials science and tips from professional chefs.
one. Explore the materials
Inexpensive wooden planks made from beech, birch, pine. However, these types of wood do not like moisture and crack if not properly maintained. Expensive models are made from oak, acacia, rubber wood, hevea and teak: They are more durable and resistant to moisture.
The most durable wooden boards in existence — end (with short wood grains perpendicular to the cutting surface). Such models do not scratch and do not blunt knives.
Budget waterproof option — board bamboo. However, it should be borne in mind that in the production of boards from a hollow bamboo stem, glue is used, which is not always safe for health.
plastic boards — low-cost, low-maintenance accessories. Their obvious drawback is a soft surface, which quickly loses its presentable appearance. Before buying, make sure that the selected model is made of durable quality plastic that does not contain harmful bisphenol-A.
stone boards are distinguished by increased strength, moisture resistance, and models made of natural marble have natural bactericidal properties. On the other hand, stone is a heavy material, it dulls knives and, moreover, is not cheap. A more practical analog — fake diamondwhich weighs significantly less and does not blunt the blades as much.
Glass-ceramic boards do not absorb odors and juices of products, they are distinguished by the variability of shapes and colors. However, products slide on a smooth surface, which often leads to injury, and careless handling of a fragile accessory is fraught with chips.
2. Decide on the quantity
Professional chefs use more than 6 cutting boards: for meat, for chicken, for fish, for onions with garlic, for bread, and one more for vegetables and fruits. Fans will be satisfied with a set of four boards, two of which are for meat and fish, the third for vegetables and fruits, and the fourth for bread. It is necessary to delimit the functionality for the following reasons:
• cross-contamination of products with microorganisms living in fish and meat — cross-contamination;
• the spread of persistent odors, such as fish and seafood.
In addition, alternating boards will help extend their service life, save time and effort: a bread board, for example, does not need to be washed after each use, just shake it off the crumbs.
3. Choose size and shape
For working with meat and fish, professional chefs advise using massive accessories with an area of 30 by 50 cm, 3-4 cm thick: such boards do not slip on the countertop and do not limit the working space. For vegetables, fruits and bread, boards measuring 20 by 30 cm are suitable. Small boards are optimal for slicing cheese and sausages.
According to professionals, the best shape of a cutting board is rectangular. These accessories are easy to use and store. However, do not ignore round, square and curly options: boards of different shapes are more difficult to confuse during cooking.
Ideal option — cutting board with channels for draining juices. Such an accessory will help to keep the presentable appearance of products and cleanliness in the kitchen.