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Cheese Board Problems

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 

Hi everyone:

 

I'm a newbie here and have been going nuts searching the Web trying to find which type of material is best for a chess board. My husband loves his cheeses and I got tired of him slicing and dicing them on the counter top. I purchased him a stainless steel one with a slicer but it pretty much sucks. Besides, I'm the lucky one who gets to clean the darn thing.

 

Anyway, I've been looking at marble "cheeseboards" which I have recently found out that they are pastry boards. Since he buys fairly big blocks of cheeses, he needs a decent size board (I was looking in the 12 x 18 range). I've read up on so many materials that it's making my head spin.

 

I just bought him a MAC cheese knife for X-mas and I want to get him a nice cheese board to go with it and something that can also be used to serve the cheese on for a party. I have a small bamboo cutting board for his everyday use, but I don't know if that is good thing healthwise for him, the knife, and the board.

 

Anyone have any suggestions out there for me?  I'd like the keep the price under $100.

 

And I'm curious about something, what is the dome for with some of the cheese boards...except to keep insects away???

 

Thanks!  I'd really appreciate the help.

 

 

post #2 of 6

So, are you having cheese board problems?

post #3 of 6

1. From your knives' perspective, butcher-block hardwood will always be best. The problem with this is that it will absorb from the cheese. If you leave cheese out on the board, wood of any kind probably isn't ideal, in which case you need a knife that won't be much damaged by something like marble. So my first question would be what sorts of knives does he cut cheese with? Do they have actual sharp edges, or just kinda-sorta blade-like edges, and do they get used for anything other than cheese?

 

2. The dome does keep out insects, but it also keeps in moisture. When cheese dries out it loses most of its qualities. So an impermeable dome is a good thing.

 

3. Bear in mind that if your cheese is left out at room temperature, it will grow mold more rapidly. Your husband might want to consider keeping only relatively small pieces of cheese "active" on the board, and the rest tightly sealed in the fridge for later cutting. Or else buy smaller pieces freshly cut at the store, since cheese experts claim that cheese begins to die as soon as it's cut.

post #4 of 6

Go to home depot buy yourself a good piece of  sealed tile or a piece of window sill marble. heck of a lot cheaper then marble cheese boards. tile is chep enough so that when it gets old, dump it . both can go in dishwasher also.

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 #5 of 6
Thread Starter 

Okay...now you have me wondering if my other cutting boards are right for the jobs with my knives.

 

He has a MAC MK-40 Cheese knife.  We live overseas, so we like to grab the local sausages and cheeses and make snack time. I was thinking of a small board for quick cuts and a larger one for cutting/serving. But I don't know what material to get bamboo, maple, marble?  I really don't have a clue.

 

I am slowly replacing our crappy knife set with MAC knives. I use two bamboo cutting boards with the MAC knives: one for meats and one for veggies.  Is this combo safe or am I damaging the MAC knives?  I need one more cutting board for breads--what is recommended for this?

 

Ah geez...this can drive a person crazy!

 

Thanks for any help anyone can give me!!!

 

 

 

post #6 of 6

It's a bit complicated since knives and boards don't stand in isolation, nor even in a monogamous relationship.  Sharpening and maintenance play huge parts -- especially with knives which can take an edge as well as a MAC.

 

As a general rule wood is better than anything else, and "end grain" wood is better than "long" or "side" grain. 

 

Bamboo isn't wood, it's grass.  There are a few issues with bamboo, the largest being the amount of glue it takes to glue enough bamboo stems to make a board -- the glue sets hard.  Anyway, in the greater scheme of things bamboo is in the tier just below real wood -- along with "composite," but well above nylon or any sort of plastic. 

 

General purpose boards take a lot of chopping, so they need to be gentler on knife edges and better at "healing" scratches than boards used for other purposes.  Unless you use very sharp knives for cutting your cheese, board material doesn't make that much difference.  If I had a board I really liked that was wrong for my knives, I'd get a cheap knife and reserve it for the board, cutting pies, and other sorts of things which are tough on edges.  At our house we have a Forschner Rosewood Wide Fillet  I bought ages ago for those sorts of things and it's doing fine. Considering how little use a cheese knife gets and that it's never used for chopping, I don't think a hard board will be much of a problem for your MAC either. 

 

Hope this helps,

BDL

 

 

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