Now that I’m making an effort to eat only local, organic produce, I figured I should start treating my fruit and veg with more respect — so I’ve been washing everything carefully and bringing out my fancy chef’s knife to make sure it all gets sliced and diced with expert precision. Unfortunately, expert precision isn’t so easy when you’re working on a wobbly, splintered, dried-out, five-year-old cutting board from Ikea.
I decided to get a new one, but wanted to make sure I made a good, green choice. Plastic ones meant no trees would be chopped down, but then plastic isn’t exactly an eco-friendly material. I’d read a lot about bamboo cutting boards, but they can be expensive, plus I couldn’t find any near me and didn’t want to order something online to be delivered by truck.
Then, my culinary guardian angel — Tony Vrbanatz of the Kitchen and Glass Place — came to the rescue.
He recommended the Epicurean Natural Richlite cutting board (above), which has been popular in restaurants for over 30 years and is made from an environmentally friendly wood fiber laminate.
It’s lightweight, dishwasher safe (not that this matters to me, at least until March), won’t dull knives, is temperature resistant to 350 degrees, nonporous and prohibits bacteria, odors and staining (although I have yet to administer the final test: beets).
Most importantly, it seems as though it’ll be incredibly durable, which means it won’t need replacing for years and years to come. Of course, there are plenty of other options out there, and if you’re lucky enough to have a granite countertop, you don’t even need a chopping board. Still, I’m enjoying my new cutting surface, and I think my carrots are, too.