Owning a Butcher Block

butcher blockA butcher block was initially designed for use in meat markets and butcher shops but currently has made its way into many homes. They are used for several purposes such as decorations, tables, preparation of food and as storage shelves. Below are tips that will guide you on how to own and effectively use one.

The block is mainly used as a chopping block. It is durable and handles the function very well as opposed to the other types of surfaces which get damaged easily during chopping. This is because they are made from unfinished wood rather than processed lumber. Users can therefore have it easier chopping without damaging the chopping surface.

It is a valuable tool that can be used to chop vegetables or meat in the kitchen. It is time saving since pulling out a tiny chopping board each time you need to make dinner is time consuming. Furthermore, you can easily misplace it at times making it even harder. A butcher block provides the user with a large counter-top area for preparation of food. You will therefore not have to battle through your kitchen displacing some of the items in order to create space for your small chopping board.

Blocks that stick food should be prepared in advance in order to avoid this behavior. The preparation process involves good seasoning by warming some vegetable oil and pouring it on the clean block before spreading it evenly. The oil should be allowed to dry for about 45 minutes without interruption before being used. Non-stick surfaces will provide you with an easier time when chopping.

One of the major concerns with butcher blocks is how to clean them. The block has to be cleaned by hand since they can’t be stuck into the sink and dishwasher. Washing is important since raw materials leave around germs and bacteria that keep thriving if not washed off. To completely keep off the germs, the block should be cleaned with a spray solution containing bleach and water in the ratio of 1:9. After spraying the block, it should be wiped using a clean towel.

Avoid getting too much water on the block while using it. Since they are made from wood, they are capable of holding water for a longer period of time which is responsible for splitting or damage after some time. Liquids should therefore be kept away from it and whenever some water drops on them, they should be cleaned immediately with a towel. You should also avoid cutting the surface at the same point each time while chopping since this can affect the continuity of the surface. The butcher block can be refinished by sanding the surface with grit or less abrasive sandpaper. This will help in the removal of stains and areas damaged by the knife during usage.

Owning a butcher block is advantageous since you can use them for more purpose than they are intended for. Despite being the perfect tool for chopping meat, it is considered to be a highly-decorative device that can spark up a conversation when you have visitors. You will never realize the benefits of owning a butcher block until you have one in your home.

How to buy and Take Care of Your Wood Countertop

wood_countertopsWood is a natural living material, sophisticated and elegant. When combined with its warm characteristics, wood opens an abundance of design options in countertops nowadays. Despite the elegance and versatility wood offers, many homeowners are apprehensive regarding the maintenance and care. That said, no matter what kitchen countertop style you find appealing, you will want to consider maintenance and durability before making a decision.

Why you need a wood countertop?

The wooden top is the natural complement of any veneered cabinetry or solid wood. The wooden tops will wonderfully go together with moldings, cornices and hardwood floorings, offering a genuine sense of balance to your kitchen. If properly installed and sealed, a wooden countertop can last almost a lifetime. Unlike granite or marble, a wooden counter has a great shock absorbing capacity that further assures its considerable life span. For a fairly long time, the laminate and plastic surfaces were considered much safer than wood for tasks like slicing vegetables or chopping meat. However, it has been proven by the microbiologists of the Food Research Institute that wood possesses strong antibacterial properties, that no other cutting surface appears to possess.

Basic maintenance on a regular basis

In most cases, all that’s needed is a damp, clean, nonabrasive cotton cloth and a household cleaner or mild liquid detergent. A vegetable brush or nylon bristled hand can be used, especially if you own dimensional finish laminates. As wood countertops are kind of gentle, do not flood your countertop. Scouring pads and abrasive cleaners should not be used. As for daily use, do not place hot containers or warm pots directly on the surface. Rather use a pot holder or trivet.

Tips for long lasting wood countertops

Wood counters are beautiful, but they require regular care if you want to keep them looking their best for many years to come. In order to keep your counters long lasting, wash your countertops immediately after using. It is especially important to wash a countertop when it comes to moisture containing spills, stains and scraps. Even more, if you want to keep your countertop shiny and sturdy, use mineral oil. Apply mineral oil once a month. Use only high quality mineral oil as it is food safe and will not turn rancid like some cooking oils. In addition, when using vinegar make sure to not spill it over the countertop as it is acidic enough to dissolve the glue holding the wood in place.

How to choose a best wood countertop?

As first-time buyers may not have an easy time making up their minds about what wood countertop to buy, here are some tips discussed. In the first place, consider investing in a countertop that is not only practical to use, but also eye-catching and elegant. In addition, consider the edging style that your wood countertop will have. Most wood countertops have a rounded edge, but you may prefer a straight edge which is compatible with any design. Finally, last but not least, consider that you may be in need of getting a new sink and faucet that will match your countertop.

Why a Butcher Block Table Is an Ideal Furniture for Your Kitchen

There are many ways that homeowners can make their kitchens to have an appealing look and enhanced functioning simultaneously. However, one element that you can use to make your overall kitchen to stand out is by incorporating a butcher block table. This is a particular piece of furniture that is used to carry out various activities in the kitchen. It is gaining popularity amongst numerous homeowners and kitchen designers who would like to experience the desirable feeling during food preparation. There are several aspects that make this particular piece of furniture ideal for your kitchen and some of them include the following;

Durability

A suitable butcher block table is made from natural hard woods which are very solid and are glued together to form a hard block enabling them to withstand use and prevent knife marks from appearing on the surface. Some of the notable hard woods used in constructing this furniture include red oak, teak, walnut and hard maple among others. This therefore, enables this kitchen furniture to be hard-wearing and ultimately last for a considerable period of time without thinking about replacing it. This is important because it will enable you to save a reasonable amount of money that you would otherwise spent on replacing it since it does not wear out easily.

Aesthetic appeal

This is also another great element that makes this particular furniture suitable for your kitchen. Most of them have a natural finishing that makes them to have an attractive appearance. This is because they are typically made from natural woods thus making them possible to give your kitchen a warm and welcoming atmosphere. The natural finishing also complements most of the elements in the kitchen such as the cabinetry thus making this furniture to create a kitchen room that is classy and at the same time handy.

Varied designs

Since this kind of kitchen was developed over a century ago, it has undergone various modifications to suit the particular taste and preference of different homeowners. This basically implies that currently, it is available in many designs, sizes and shapes. There are some that also have additional features such as knife racks, storage drawers, removable cutting boards and shelving among many more. This is essential because it helps the homeowner to enhance convenience during food preparation and other activities in the kitchen area.

Easy maintenance

This is also another fundamental aspect that makes a butcher block table ideal for your kitchen place. This is essential because it helps in preventing growth of bacteria that could possibly lead to food poisoning. All you need to do is to use the relevant disinfectants to clean the surface on a regular basis. You should also apply mineral oil and allow it to soak overnight because this will prevent it from drying and consequently cracking since it helps in sealing the moisture into the wood. It also helps in eliminating possible residual smell from this piece of furniture.

Cost-effective

This kitchen furniture is also available at cost-effective rates thus enabling homeowners to easily obtain them without necessarily feeling a pinch on their pockets. They also come in various designs, shapes and sizes thus making it easy for the potential client to actually find one that fits within his budget.