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Seasoning chopping block with mineral oil

post #1 of 18
Thread Starter 

Hola,

 

 

I picked up a nice new chopping block yesterday and I want to take care of it correctly and all my research says season with mineral oil. I went to two different stores today to pick up mineral oil and they both say they are laxatives. I am not to sure I want to season something with laxatives. Is there a different type of oil I could use? Also looking at the labels both didn't mention food safe.

 

Thanks,

 

Brian

post #2 of 18

I have a Boos Block and I use their oil.  Boos Mystery Oil.  I'm sure there is something cheaper but I bought a small supply when I bought the block.

 

Rich

post #3 of 18

Don't worry about the laxative effect (when taken straight) on the board.  The wood's full of fiber anyway.

 

Sorry.

 

Seriously, don't worry about it.  Just regular mineral oil from a drug store.  If it's from the drug store, it's food grade. 

 

If you want, you can melt some pure beeswax and mix the oil with it -- about 7 parts oil to 1 part beeswax -- and it will hold up a little better.  I use straight mineral oil, myself.

 

BDL

post #4 of 18

As BDL says, you have to drink the stuff for it to be a laxative.

 

When used to treat cutting boards you are not actually injesting any of it. The wood absorbs the oil. Any excess is wiped off.

 

The various branded products: Boos Mystery Oil, Butcher Block Oil, etc. are just mineral oil, except they charge a premium for it. Get it at the drug store and you're good to go.

 

Whilel there's nothing wrong with mixing beeswax with the oil, it's an unnecessary step. And it causes the oil to coat the surface, rather than being absorbed into the wood, unless you rub it in with enough force to create heat. Easier to skip it.

They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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post #5 of 18

Once a week here at the lodge the ladies bleach the chopping blocks (there are 2) then coat them with mineral oil. They wipe off the excess.  The this has kept the cutting blocks fresh for 20 years now.

 

My only complaint is when I get the boards wet and the mineral oil turns white. YUCK!!!

post #6 of 18

I don't understand that schedule, ChefRoss.

 

If you're going to bother sanitizing a board it should be done after each time it's used. Once weekly doesn't accomplish a whole lot.

 

The white you're running into is a result of there being too much oil. The boards are saturated with it, and there's a film of oil floating on the surface. That mixes with the water, and their you go.

They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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post #7 of 18

And Sodium benzs... is poison, but when used 1/10 of 1% it is a preservative found in many foods we eat daily even baby foods.

I have been using mineral oil(food grade for 25 years to sharpen my knives and oil my kitchen equipment. No problems yet.

Chef EdB
Over 50 years in food service business 35 as Ex Chef. Specializing in Volume upscale Catering both on and off premise .(former Exec. Chef in the largest on premise caterer in US  with 17 Million Dollars per year annual volume). 
      Well versed in all facets of Continental Cuisine...

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Chef EdB
Over 50 years in food service business 35 as Ex Chef. Specializing in Volume upscale Catering both on and off premise .(former Exec. Chef in the largest on premise caterer in US  with 17 Million Dollars per year annual volume). 
      Well versed in all facets of Continental Cuisine...

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post #8 of 18

I agree with everything you say but this is out of my hands.

I do bleach the cutting boards if I am using them, but this cleaning schedule is done aside from what I do there.

Remember this is someones home and not a commercial kitchen.

post #9 of 18

Not wood boards, but any of the other plastics or synthetic boards can really be cleaned by putting in the steamer for about 5 minutes. No chemicals needed Steam Kills All.

Chef EdB
Over 50 years in food service business 35 as Ex Chef. Specializing in Volume upscale Catering both on and off premise .(former Exec. Chef in the largest on premise caterer in US  with 17 Million Dollars per year annual volume). 
      Well versed in all facets of Continental Cuisine...

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Chef EdB
Over 50 years in food service business 35 as Ex Chef. Specializing in Volume upscale Catering both on and off premise .(former Exec. Chef in the largest on premise caterer in US  with 17 Million Dollars per year annual volume). 
      Well versed in all facets of Continental Cuisine...

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post #10 of 18

Not disagreeing with you, Ed, but wondering if 5 minutes is long enough? Depending on authority cited (USDA says 212F, CDC says 175F), the application of high heat for "sustained" periods will kill most pathogens. But sustained never seems to be defined.

 

They used to recommend that if you doubted canned (that is, home-canned) foods to boil them for ten minutes. And when boiling water for safety reasons, ten minutes is also the figure traditionall used. So maybe that extra five minutes in the steamer would make sense? Certainly wouldn't hurt.

 

For the home cook, synthetics can just be run through the dishwasher.

They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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post #11 of 18

Since steam I believe is 212. And the gauge on this thing says 212-220  I really think 5 minutes is enough . When the plastiboard comes out it is almost flexible and at a 1/2 inch thats pretty hot. 

Chef EdB
Over 50 years in food service business 35 as Ex Chef. Specializing in Volume upscale Catering both on and off premise .(former Exec. Chef in the largest on premise caterer in US  with 17 Million Dollars per year annual volume). 
      Well versed in all facets of Continental Cuisine...

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Chef EdB
Over 50 years in food service business 35 as Ex Chef. Specializing in Volume upscale Catering both on and off premise .(former Exec. Chef in the largest on premise caterer in US  with 17 Million Dollars per year annual volume). 
      Well versed in all facets of Continental Cuisine...

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post #12 of 18

My son the cabintemaker (well, he's actually back into heavy industrial valves again) who has made many, many cutting boards, researched this extensively and found several resaerch papers from the Food Science Department of the University of Wisconsin affirming the safety - actually, the superiority - of wood boards treated with USP mineral oil, available at most any drugstore.

 

Wipe once a day for the first week, letting it air-dry on edge; then once a week for the first couple of months, once a month for the remainder of the first year, and then just now and then when it starts to look dry. With this regimen it will last longer than you will.  You really don't need any designer "cutting board" oil.

 

If you plan to make your own, use hard-rock maple and Titebond III  glue, which is waterproof and USDA approved for this foody application. You will need a lot of clamps. 

 

Mike

travelling gourmand
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travelling gourmand
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post #13 of 18
Thread Starter 

Thanks everyone,

 

I picked up the mineral oil this morning and I washed the block with just a damp cloth to get any dust off it and let it air dry on it side for about 10-15 minutes. When I applied the oil boy was that wood thirsty! I applied enough to give the wood that wet look and let it air dry on it side for about 15 minutes and so far so good. I just did the top, is it important to do the sides and bottom also?

 

I think I am going to follow Mike's post for once a day for a week then once a week for a few months I think that will work perfect.

 

Thanks again,

 

Brian

post #14 of 18

Brian, yes, Mike's schedule is a good one. But you should oil the sides and bottom as well, particularly if it's a reversible board.

 

It's not unusual for new wood to soak up the oil like that. As the board gets seasoned less and less oil will be needed at any one time.

 

You will need a lot of clamps.

 

Workshop rule #1, as you well know, Mike, is that you never have enough clamps. Or if you do, they're the wrong style for that project. Tsk, tsk, tsk, it's off to Woodcraft again.

 

But I wonder if you're not overstating it in this case. I can't remember the last time I used more than 4 on a normal sized cutting board.

 

Now then, if you're building a butcher-block style countertop........

They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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post #15 of 18

"you never have enough clamps."

 

Well, I'm not impressed, KYH.  I know prefectly well you stole that axiom from Norm Abrams.

 

Mike

travelling gourmand
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travelling gourmand
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post #16 of 18

Norm who???

 

Actually, I learned that from my shop teacher in high school, more years ago than I care to remember. But I wouldn't mind having about half of Norm's space, and some of his fancy power tools. My God! A 36 inch belt sander. Who do I have to kill.

They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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post #17 of 18

"Who do I have to kill.

 

Nobody, actually - just get a gig on Public Broadcasting. The taxpayers will cover the expenses.

 

Mike 

travelling gourmand
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travelling gourmand
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post #18 of 18

USP mineral oil, my brand says something Health, I didn't put my glasses on.  I called Boo's before I used it the first time and they said it was the right stuff to use.  I have had my Boos about 10 years.

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