Chopping board choices for hygiene

Chopping board choices for hygiene

Hygiene is very important in the kitchen. We all know this. But how much attention do we pay to kitchen hygiene ‘danger zones’ like chopping boards? Chopping boards used in food prep (also commonly called cutting boards) can be breeding grounds for bacteria if they are not cleaned properly after use.

The following provides a brief guide to the different kinds of food chopping boards you can get and what to consider re hygiene:

Types of kitchen chopping boards - plastic, bamboo and glass

Types of kitchen chopping boards – plastic, bamboo and glass

Types of kitchen chopping boards:

  • Wood cutting boards are still popular as heavy duty chopping boards. They look good (think ‘French Country Kitchen’), they are stable, and they don’t ‘leak’ juices off the edges, like glass cutting boards do. In general, chefs also prefer wooden cutting boards because they are the kindest on knives. However, they can retain food particulates and active pathogens if they are not scrubbed clean and dried thoroughly after each use.
  • Bamboo cutting boards are less pricey than hardwood cutting boards. They are also less prone to collecting deep cuts and grooves over time. This can make them a more hygienic option – as long as care is given to cleaning and drying out the boards thoroughly after use to kill off bacteria and prevent fungal infestations in the bamboo grain. Clean with soap and water and disinfect regularly.
  • Plastic or acrylic chopping boards. Light weight and easy to clean, plastic and acrylic cutting boards are ideal for meat, chicken, and fish ad they are dishwasher safe and easy to wipe down.
    However, some hard plastic cutting boards quickly collect a network of fine cuts and grooves. These are ideal hiding places for bacteria.
  • Glass chopping boards are noisy, blunt knives, and juices run off them on to counters. However, are very easy to clean and wipe between uses. They are also dishwasher safe.

Irrespective of the type of board being used: Use once for chopping each food type if there is a cross-contamination risk e.g. with raw chicken. Clean after each use – with boiling water for wood, or in the dishwasher.

Cook with love…and Cool Kitchen Stuff

Read with love…and Cool Kitchen Stuff

The absolute essentials for your kitchen

The absolute essentials for your kitchen

The items considered essential vary drastically between people. It all depends on how much cooking you want to do, and how much entertaining. It also depends on how seriously you take your cooking, and creative you want to be. Ask any chef, and their list of essentials will include many more items than most people will ever need! As a baker what’s essential, and you’ll get a whole different list.

The following is a list of ‘absolute bare essentials’ – basic kitchen items that you will need for most dishes. The important thing being: SETS of almost everything, or two or three varieties of something, e.g. mixing bowls!

The essentials for kitchen vary according to what type of cook you are

Items every starter kitchen should have:

Kitchen essentials include:

  1. Knives The important knife and block set – with different sizes and types knives for most important applications of application, from a chef’s knife to a carving knife, bread knife to paring knife.
    (ADD: A knife / blade sharpener. Essential to keep your chef’s knives other large chopping knives from going blunt…)
  2. Cutting boards
    – Fruit and vegetable: wood or bamboo is best
    – For cutting meat: glass or silicone
  3. Cooking Utensil set – with your spatulas, ladles, draining spoon and potato masher
  4. Wood utensil set! (Including wooden salad servers)
  5. Plastic colander – good for draining pasta and washing lettuce. Add a stainless steel one later.
  6. Set of pots and pans: Get a full set in one go. It’s much cheaper in the end and you’ll never be caught out with ‘not the right pot’.
  7. Set of 3 casserole dishes – small, medium, and large. (ADD: Oven gloves)
    1. Dinnerware SET
    2. Cutlery SET
    3. plastic mixing bowl, 2 x medium sized glass bowls that can double up as salad bowls.
    4. A potato peeler.
    5. Measuring jugs – 1 large plastic and I glass jug

    Once you have the above, you have the core kitchen items you can gradually add to, according to your meal preferences.

    Have fun setting up your kitchen!

    Cook with love…and Cool Kitchen Stuff

    Read with love…and Cool Kitchen Stuff