My cutting board lives on the countertop and I use it several times a day, cutting everything from fruit, breads, carrots, etc. so, therefore I wash it several times a day. I noticed the other day how pale, dried out and tired it looked and then I remember I hadn’t conditioned it or oiled it in a long time! This a board I bought about 12 years ago-one of the many kitchen products I got at the Shop At Home network when I worked there as a host. It still works great, but it was clearly in need of some attention.
Oiling or conditioning a wooden board is important to help keep it from drying out, which can lead to warping, cracking or splitting. A warped board won’t sit flat on the counter and who wants to cut anything on a wobbly surface. Not safe and very frustrating. And cracking and splitting could be an invitation for bits of food to hide in and there’s nothing clean about that. Keeping a cutting board in great shape is easy if you have the right tools. After I recognized that my little bamboo buddy was starting to look puny and unloved, I was at Williams Sonoma at a cooking demonstration and asked them for a recommendation. They suggested the Boos Block Board Cream (the Boos cutting board folks), a combination of bee’s wax & food grade mineral oil. I also had some regular food safe mineral oil at home that I’ve used in the past. Here’s a before and after using the Boos and links for both. It came back to life!
Like artists clean their brushes, guitar player polish their guitars, us cooks have to take care of our tools too. If your cutting board is looking old as the hills and twice as dusty, try giving it a little moisture. If you take care care of it with regular conditioning, much like you would your leather jacket, it will last longer & perform better. When you think about how important your cutting board is and how often you use it, spending just a little bit of time and money to help maintain it is not a big sacrifice.