Without proper care, your trusty cutting board can start to smell like your famous garlic chicken—permanently. Since you can’t just stick a wooden board in the dishwasher (lest it warp and crack), try this tip to keep it in business for life:
Rub a new wooden cutting board with food-grade mineral oil to condition the wood; do this weekly for a month, then once a month going forward.
After general use, wash well with hot, soapy water, rinse, and pat dry. If you’re working on a particularly messy job (like peeling beets), do a deep-cleaning: Sprinkle the board with coarse salt (such as kosher); massage the salt in with the cut side of half a lemon. The acid in the juice will disinfect and deodorize; the salt will act as an abrasive, sloughing off bits of food and small stains. Rinse the board with hot water, towel-dry, and set it upright to dry completely.
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