Wooden kitchen utensils add an unparalleled sense of rustic charm and coziness to your culinary field. Not only are these traditional objects aesthetically pleasing, environmentally sound, and long-lasting, but they also bring the beauty quotient while making cooking or dining easier with them by your side at all times.
However, their upkeep necessitates meticulous attention to safety concerns as well as maintaining their exceptional quality indefinitely. As a result, sweeping cleanliness becomes an essential component if you want to maintain the numerous benefits derived from using such utensils fruitfully over time.
The goal of this post is to show you a variety of tips for cleaning and maintaining your wooden kitchen ware. Following these methods, you can use these implements with caution while also extending their lifespan, whether they're new purchases or existing members of your ensemble.
Why Use Wooden Kitchen Utensils?
Throughout history, wooden kitchen tools have remained a fixture in households. The reason for their continued popularity is multifaceted and deserves exploration.
These items not only possess aesthetic allure but boast various functional advantages as well - which are highly valued by culinary professionals and amateurs alike.
How to Clean Wooden Kitchen Utensils Properly?
When it comes to cookware, although wooden utensils have many advantages, they do come with one exception: maintenance is vital to preserving their longevity, preventing bacteria growth and protecting its natural beauty. Here are some cleaning tips for them.
Wash Wooden Kitchenware By Hand
Initially, it is crucial to keep in mind that dishwashers are not suitable for wooden utensils. Despite the benefits offered by this appliance, its elevated temperature and forceful water can lead to distortion or splitting of the wood.
Use Hot water and a Mild Dish Soap
Rather than taking the easy route, take to cleaning utensils by hand with warm water and a mild soap. It's important to steer clear of using rigid detergents or abrasive sponges that could harm the wood surface causing damage like scratches, cracks, or splits. Take care when scrubbing food particles from your kitchen ware; use something soft such as sponge or cloth. Instead of allowing stubborn stains to sit in place on these items you can utilize vinegar or lemon juice for removal purposes while also riding any unwanted odors they may have picked up along their way.
Drying Wooden Kitchen Utensils
Furthermore, refrain from immersing them in water for an extended period of time. Subsequently, ensure that you use a hygienic cloth to wipe away moisture or allow natural air flow until they are dry before keeping them.
Maintaining the Appearance and Lifespan of Wooden Kitchen Utensils
You should oil your wooden kitchen utensils on a regular basis. This will create a protective yet flexible barrier that will aid in controlling the wood's natural desire to change its moisture content. Deterring this prevents fading, cracking, and splitting, as well as making the wood more resistant to absorbing stains and odors.
How Do You Oil Kitchenware?
To lubricate wooden kitchen utensils, use food-grade mineral oil, coconut oil, olive oil, or beeswax. Merely administer a sparse coating of the substance onto these tools' exteriors via a fresh cloth or sheet of paper towel.
After that, allow the tools to soak up the oil for a few hours or during the night. Then after this time period passes and before over-saturating has happened, remove any remaining residue using an uncontaminated cloth.
You must complete this process on multiple occasions every couple of months or when necessary based on how frequently it's used.
Kind of Oil Use On Wooden Kitchen Utensils
Use the best oil you have. It is critical to use the right oil that will protect your wood while not conveying flavors or strange additives. It must be protective, reduce moisture intake, and be breathable all at the same time.
As we mentioned previously, beeswax, olive oil, coconut oil, or olive oil are all good options. All of them are 100% food-safe, widely available, and will protect your wooden kitchenware for a long time.
Beeswax is frequently recommended because it is safe to eat and provides a beautiful shiny, smooth surface that is fairly waterproof. However, it hardens at room temperature and melts at high temperatures.
So, guess where all that wax goes the moment you start stirring a hot soup? Yup. Directly into your soup.
Not only are you consuming trace amounts of wax, but your spoon has also lost all of its protective properties. There are many "wood butters" on the market that contain a combination of oils and wax, which some people believe combines the best of both worlds. In any case, it requires a lot of upkeep.
Mineral oil, which is derived from petroleum, is also recommended. They sometimes get a bad rap for being petroleum-based, but they are completely food safe, penetrate the wood grain extremely well, will not go rancid, will not leave a sticky residue, and are odorless. These have an incredible shelf life.
Food based oils
This type of oil never truly dries and can discolor your utensils, turn sticky, and go rancid after prolonged exposure to air, causing your utensils to smell terrible.
Walnut and linseed oils are a couple of exceptions. They will not go rancid and will dry, so they are frequently recommended. However, it can become sticky, so only apply it in thin layers to tools you use and wash frequently. They will leave a yellow or amber tint on the utensils you use them on, as well as oxidize and darken with age and exposure to sunlight. Several coats will be required! If you have a nut allergy, use them with caution.
So, which one should you go with? To be honest, the decision is entirely up to you, depending on your lifestyle and how regularly you intend to use your tools and condition your wood.
Ways To Store Wooden Utensils
To preserve the quality of your wooden kitchen utensils, it is important to store them in an area that has good ventilation and free from dampness, heat or direct contact with sunlight. This place should also be clean because dust or dirt can settle on the surface and make it unsanitary for later use.
The more you protect these valuable items by keeping them with extra care the longer they last long to serve their purpose effectively.
You can implement an organizer, container, or wall-mounted fixture which can help keep your utensils in order. Moreover, you should ensure that the utensils are not too close or stacked on top of one another, as this may contribute to marking and damage.
Besides that, you had better avoid holding your cutlery in plastic bags or containers because these storages are likely to trap moisture and promote bacterial growth.
In summary, maintaining wooden kitchen tools is a simple task that can be completed with readily available items found in most homes. Following our recommendations, you can keep your wooden kitchen utensils in great condition and functional for an extended period of time.