Care of your Halton Studios End-Grain Chopping Block
For daily cleanup of your chopping block, just wipe the board off with a damp cloth or run water over it in the sink and then dry it off. Your board has been sealed against moisture, but it is still wood, and wood and water are not good companions. Don’t leave the board sitting on a wet counter or clean it in the dishwasher. Once every few weeks, depending upon use and household temperature, condition your board with wood conditioner, (typically a mixture of mineral oil and beeswax). Halton Studios makes a great custom blend, but you can purchase a different brand at most hardware stores. Rub on enough wood conditioner to cover the board, (front, back and edges) leave it on for 5 – 10 minutes and wipe off any conditioner remaining. Do not use food based oils such as olive, vegetable or walnut oils to condition your board, as these may turn rancid.
Why is end-grain important? Typical cutting boards use the face or edge grain of the wood as the cutting surface. When you cut on these boards, you are cutting into the wood itself, and within a year or so the board will be badly scarred and need to be replaced. Your new board is made so that the cutting surface is made up of the end-grains of the boards, so that with normal use (no major butchering with a cleaver or electric knives please! J) when you cut your food the wood works with the knife, practically self-sealing, resulting in minimal scarring and a much longer life span (board-span?). And end-grain chopping block is easier on your knives as well!
With proper care your board will be a useful and beautiful tool in your kitchen for many years to come.