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Topic # 229191 12-Feb-2018 09:28
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TLDR: What's the best type of chopping board for good knives, and where do buy them?

 

This so following on from the knife thread from a couple of weeks ago. I'm looking at pulling the trigger and finally getting some good knives, but then the question came up about the cheap chopping boards I have.

 

From what gather an end grain board made of hardwood (but not too hard) is best.

 

I was out yesterday and saw a very nice looking Teak one at half price, a quick Google said Teak was pretty good, so it bought it. But after getting it home I read that some manufacturers mislead you into thinking you are buying genuine Teak, when you are actually buying something less expensive such as Cumaru (which is also known as Brazilian Teak, but is in fact a completely different wood).

 

Anyway, after reading this I had a look at the smaller print on the label of my new board and it listed a few countries where it said Teak was from - and Brazil was first on the list.

 

I'm going back to the store today to return it, as I'm sure they won't have a clue if it's real Teak or "Brazilian Teak". And since "Brazilian Teak" is about 3x harder than proper Teak, I've never be comfortable using good knives on it without knowing which it is.

 

So this leads be back to my search, but the more I read the more I am getting a nasty case of purchasing paralysis as there is just so much info out there. Apparently Sugar Maple is the gold standard, but can you even get it here? What would be an NZ equivalent, and where can you get them?





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  Reply # 1955528 12-Feb-2018 09:48
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I have expensive knives and I just bought the wood ones I liked the look of. So far no serious issues I am aware of. I have my knives pro sharpened every 12-18 months. 

 

Sometimes I think we have a tendency to over complicate things. 

 

 


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  Reply # 1955531 12-Feb-2018 09:55
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Endgrain from good timber. The board will look like a chessboard, usually, made of lots of smaller squares. I have one made of Tasmanian Blackwood.

 

Flat grain (the most common type of wooden board) will be more likely to dull edges. Also avoid bamboo - it's very hard.

 

Alternatively, plastic is ok if you prefer that from a hygiene POV.

 

Not glass.

 

It is amazing how hard some wood can be. I gave my mother a breadboard made from Iroko (a teak-like wood from Africa) when I was 15 and she cuts bread on it daily still, some 35 years later!






 
 
 
 




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  Reply # 1955536 12-Feb-2018 10:05
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networkn:

 

Sometimes I think we have a tendency to over complicate things. 

 

 

I do indeed do that, but at the same time a good board is expensive so want to make sure I'm getting a decent one.




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  Reply # 1955557 12-Feb-2018 10:18
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Geektastic:

 

Endgrain from good timber. The board will look like a chessboard, usually, made of lots of smaller squares. I have one made of Tasmanian Blackwood.

 

Flat grain (the most common type of wooden board) will be more likely to dull edges. Also avoid bamboo - it's very hard.

 

Alternatively, plastic is ok if you prefer that from a hygiene POV.

 

Not glass.

 

It is amazing how hard some wood can be. I gave my mother a breadboard made from Iroko (a teak-like wood from Africa) when I was 15 and she cuts bread on it daily still, some 35 years later!

 

 

Knowing what a good timber is is the problem, I though I was doing well with the one I got - but if it is actually Brazilian Teak then it is even harder than bamboo. Being end grain would help of course, but I'm still not happy with the idea of how hard it potentially is so I'll be looking for something else.

 

@Geektastic I know you're a bit of a knife enthusiast, you wouldn't also happen to know the best places to by end grain chopping boards?

 

 


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  Reply # 1955560 12-Feb-2018 10:21
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Paul1977:

 

Geektastic:

 

Endgrain from good timber. The board will look like a chessboard, usually, made of lots of smaller squares. I have one made of Tasmanian Blackwood.

 

Flat grain (the most common type of wooden board) will be more likely to dull edges. Also avoid bamboo - it's very hard.

 

Alternatively, plastic is ok if you prefer that from a hygiene POV.

 

Not glass.

 

It is amazing how hard some wood can be. I gave my mother a breadboard made from Iroko (a teak-like wood from Africa) when I was 15 and she cuts bread on it daily still, some 35 years later!

 

 

Knowing what a good timber is is the problem, I though I was doing well with the one I got - but if it is actually Brazilian Teak then it is even harder than bamboo. Being end grain would help of course, but I'm still not happy with the idea of how hard it potentially is so I'll be looking for something else.

 

@Geektastic I know you're a bit of a knife enthusiast, you wouldn't also happen to know the best places to by end grain chopping boards?

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mine is from here. Locally made, reasonably priced and nice to deal with.






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  Reply # 1955583 12-Feb-2018 10:56
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The best chopping board is plastic and that fits in your dishwasher. 

 

Not sure actual type of plastic, but I would probably call it nylon, not to hard or to soft. You don't need to pay very much for them.  With decent plastic boards you can have 2 or 3 at home which don't take up much room. Miter 10 or Bunnings sell them at a reasonable price.

 

I use to be a fan of wood, but they don't last long when put though the dishwasher.  You just cant clean and dry wooden boards quickly between uses, above all this is what is important.

 

If you are worried about the edge on the knife getting blunt, don't use it.




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  Reply # 1955602 12-Feb-2018 11:07
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Geektastic:

 

Mine is from here. Locally made, reasonably priced and nice to deal with.

 

 

Thanks @Geektastic I'd seen their website, but since they didn't have prices listed I assumed they would probably be expensive, and the sizes they had listed weren't suitable for my space.

 

However on your recommendation I've now emailed them and asked if they can make something in the dimensions I require.

 

P.s. Tasmanian Blackwood is right on the money hardness-wise for your knives!




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  Reply # 1955614 12-Feb-2018 11:22
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fearandloathing:

 

The best chopping board is plastic and that fits in your dishwasher. 

 

Not sure actual type of plastic, but I would probably call it nylon, not to hard or to soft. You don't need to pay very much for them.  With decent plastic boards you can have 2 or 3 at home which don't take up much room. Miter 10 or Bunnings sell them at a reasonable price.

 

I use to be a fan of wood, but they don't last long when put though the dishwasher.  You just cant clean and dry wooden boards quickly between uses, above all this is what is important.

 

If you are worried about the edge on the knife getting blunt, don't use it.

 

 

I've read that plastic is actually less hygienic than properly maintained wood (maybe not if you put them in the dishwater after every single use - but that's not realistic for most of us).

 

All knives dull eventually, but the idea is to postpone it as long as possible.

 

I have read about thick rubber boards called Sani-Tuff that claim to be more hygienic than both plastic and wood, and as easy on your knives as wood - unfortunately I've never seen them here.


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  Reply # 1955617 12-Feb-2018 11:24
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Plastic or wood, neither will harm your knives. I use plastic cause its a lot easier to clean in the dishwasher as I am over germophobic. I dont see how a wipe will clean a wooden board well enough, especially using meat.


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  Reply # 1955621 12-Feb-2018 11:30
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I use plastic for meat, and wood for everything else. Bst of both worlds!

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  Reply # 1955623 12-Feb-2018 11:33
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I was given mine and I think it is Rimu, the otherone is possibly pine of some kind.

 

I will not have a plastic chopping board in my house as they are too unhygienic, wood has natural enzymes that kill bacteria. 

 

Not that I have given it much thought but I would think a slightly softer wood would be better so you keep the edge on the blade.

 

@networkn where to you get your knives sharpened? I had mine done some years ago and all they did was grind them and I am livid.

 

I was thinking of buying one of these.

 

https://www.fishpond.co.nz/Kitchen/Professional-Kitchen-Knife-Sharpener-System-Fix-angle-4-Stones/0610393607573?utm_source=googleps&utm_medium=ps&utm_campaign=NZ&gclid=EAIaIQobChMIh8HMpfWe2QIVk4aPCh0MsAZKEAQYBCABEgK-APD_BwE

 

John

 

 





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  Reply # 1955626 12-Feb-2018 11:38
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Hey John, I have something similar to that knife sharpener (I got mine from Amazon - it is a Lansky). It works really well, but reasonably time consuming. Mine has 5 different grades of sharpener (quite rough up to so smooth I can't feel the grain).After you have done your knives once with the rougher ones, you don't need to use it again.

 

I also have a Nirey electric sharpener, which also does a really good job. I only sharpen about once a year with that, and use a steel to hone in the meantimes.


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  Reply # 1955629 12-Feb-2018 11:38
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artisanknives.co.nz

 

was reasonable and quick. Knives were sharper than they were before. 

 

 


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  Reply # 1955630 12-Feb-2018 11:39
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I am told the guy at the matakana markets isn't too bad either. Have no personal experience.

 

 




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  Reply # 1955636 12-Feb-2018 11:49
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SATTV:

 

I was given mine and I think it is Rimu, the other one is possibly pine of some kind.

 

Not that I have given it much thought but I would think a slightly softer wood would be better so you keep the edge on the blade.

 

 

You're right, it seems to be about getting one that is hard enough that will last, but soft enough to be easy on your knives. The problem I'm having is finding info on the relative hardness of NZ native woods.

 

I'm clearly pretty anal about this sort of thing, but I just like knowing that when I'm spending good money I'm getting the right thing.


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