Choosing the correct cutting board is an important choice for your kitchen. There are several varieties of cutting boards available these days, including: wooden, plastic and glass options.
Glass options may be the easiest choice to eliminate. While many glass cutting boards are decorative and very pretty, glass cutting boards will often ruin your knives, making them dull and less effective at cutting food. So when you place a lovely corned beef brisket you have spent all day cooking onto your glass cutting board and attempt to slice it and serve it to your family, you may mangle the slices with your dull life and ruin the presentation of your meal.
However, glass cutting boards can making lovely kitchen decorations, and can be hung on the wall as kitchen art. And if you are choosing ready made meal options, that don’t require much use of knives or cutting boards, you may wish to keep your glass cutting boards.
Chef Blackstock has his own ideas about wooden cutting boards:
Wooden and plastic cutting boards will both be easier on your knives. So that corned beef brisket you wished to serve to your family will hold up nicely on both of these options. You will be able to plate and present nice even slices of the corned beef brisket at dinnertime. The main fight between wooden and plastic cutting boards was hashed out in a study by Ak, Cliver and Kaspar in 1994 at the University of California at Davis Food Safety Laboratory.
The Ak, Cliver and Kaspar study found wood cutting boards to be superior because of the “self-healing” properties of wood. When slicing on a wood cutting board, you don’t actually cut into the board, you merely slice between wood fibers, which “heal” themselves back together, and do not leave any scoring marks on the surface. Whereas with a plastic cutting board, each knife stroke leaves a mark on the surface of the board. Another argument levied by the study was that wooden cutting boards trap bacteria in their capillaries and the bacteria die off, while plastic cutting boards have porous surfaces with many places for bacteria to hide. However, with today’s anti-bacterial soaps and the ability to run boiling hot water right in your home, this argument may have been better suited to earlier times.
In wooden cutting boards’ defense, they do hold up better over time, and this may have something to do with the “self healing” properties. And presenting a meal, such as a whole corned beef brisket to be sliced in the center of the table, certainly looks prettier on a wooden cutting board. But wooden cutting boards do tend to be more expensive than their plastic counterparts, so if you’re just starting out and needing to furnish your first apartment, a plastic cutting board may be the way to go. Just keep in mind that plastic cutting boards wear out, and you will need to replace them more often. However, again with plastic cutting boards, if you are choosing to prepare ready made meals for yourself often, the plastic option may hold up longer as opposed to a home where a cutting board is used every night. And if you are space conscious, there are some unique silicone plastic cutting boards that can be rolled up to fit into tight spaces or even travel with you for camping.
All in all the cutting board debate probably depends a lot on aesthetics and what kind of meals you are serving in your kitchen. If you regularly present full turkeys and corned beef brisket and other tasty options to be cut front and center of the table, you probably want to choose a wooden option. If you’re more of a ready-made meal person, living alone with no children to worry about, then plastic or glass may be the option for you.
Sierra, MagicKitchen.com blogger