Q. How do I care for my new cutting board or rolling pin?

A. Taking care of your fine woodenware is not difficult. The time you spend will preserve your cutting board or rolling pin for generations to come:

  1. NEVER put your woodenware in the dishwasher or allow it to sit or stand in water. Prolonged contact with water can eventually lead to cracking and splitting of the wood.
  2. Wash under running water with gentle dish detergent. Wipe off excess water with paper towels and stand upright to allow to air dry.
  3. When your board appears "dry" (the color looks lighter), wipe on a coating of room temperature mineral oil*. Allow to absorb for about one half hour, then wipe off the excess with a soft cloth or paper towel. The more frequently your board is washed, the more often it should be oiled. The oil will bring out the beauty of the wood grain and protect the wood from moisture.
    *mineral oil can be found at drugstores or supermarkets. It is light-textured and non-toxic. It will not accumulate and become gummy nor will it become rancid like some food oils could.
  4. Any wood that comes in contact with moisture may, at some point, feel "fuzzy" to the touch. This "raising of the grain" is easily remedied. When the wood is completely dry, using 400 or 600 grit sandpaper (available at most hardware stores), lightly rub back and forth along the length of the board or pin until the wood feels smooth again. Wipe with a soft cloth and then oil as described in step #3. The amount of "fuzzing" will diminish with each successive wetting/buffing cycle.
*REMEMBER - Wood hates water and loves oil.*

Q. How do I take care of my new nut bowl?

A. Our natural ash bowls are not intended to hold wet foods. The exterior natural bark may need to be dusted occasionally and brushed lightly with mineral oil.
Clean the interior and bottom of the bowl with a dampened sponge. Dry well with a soft cloth or paper towel, allow to air dry and then re-oil with mineral oil. Blot excess oil which isn't absorbed by the wood. (as described in #3 above).
NOTE: Certain food products and dyed materials may cause staining of the wood.

Q. How can I tell when my woodenware needs oiling?

A. Your woodenware will appear lighter in color when it is becoming dry. It should be oiled at that time. Optimally, wood should be oiled after each washing in order to replace the surface oil that washing removes.

Q. Why do you recommend mineral oil rather than natural vegetable oils or nut oils?

A. Mineral oil is light textured and non-toxic. Its lighter texture allows good absorption and it will not build up on the surface of the wood even after repeated applications. Vegetable oils can become rancid. Some people have severe allergic reactions to nuts or nut products (even in very minute amounts).

Q. Can I use the same cutting board for meats and vegetables?

A. Use one cutting board and knife for raw meat, poultry or seafood and another for breads, salads and vegetables.
We have included this link for the USDA Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition. It outlines safe food handling guidelines.

Q. Do you make rolling pins with handles?

A. Rarely. I started making tapered rolling pins because Bonnie wanted one like her grandmother's, her mother's and her Auntie Anna's. Eventually, when our sideboard drawers were sagging with the weight of the all of the pins I had turned, we started bringing our rolling pins to craft shows. We found they were a favorite of occasional bakers and professional pastry chefs alike.

We were told that our pins, in addition to the fact that they are individually handmade using the finest woods available, offer more control and less work. The reasons we most often hear are that they are easier to manipulate, enabling the user to quickly roll out thin crusts and perfect rounds of pastry. We're told that the longer, continuous working surface won't cut into the dough like handled pins do, and that they're less tiring to use because of their lighter weight and lack of handles to grip. Our customers tell us they like the feeling of being "closer to the dough" with the ability to feel the thickness of the dough while rolling or pivoting the pin using the palms of their hands or their fingertips. They say that our pins offer excellent control by using the weight of the pin plus direct pressure from their hands to spread the dough, while varying pressure to control the dough thickness. They happily say that, with minimal practice, they easily roll out perfect circles of dough for pies, cookies, pastries, croissants, biscuits, even pizza, tortillas and dim sum!

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