美国砧板种类和选择

砧板是一个很重要但常被我们忽略的厨具。我们会精心挑选刀具、锅具,可说到买砧板,很多人可能觉得随便买一块大小 OK 的就算了。其实好马配好鞍,好刀也要配好板。下面来看看不同材质砧板的优缺点,然后下次你去买砧板就心中有数啦。

好砧板的重要因素

挑选砧板最重要的一点,是看它对刀锋的友好程度。虽说我们可以随时磨刀,但一块好砧板能最大程度地减少对刀锋的磨损。有经验的厨师会告诉你,钝刀子比利刀子更容易切到手。

其他要考虑的因素:抗菌能力、是否容易清洗;是否含有有害材料;耐用度;等。归根到底都和砧板材质有关。

玻璃、石头砧板

颜值高,但这是最最最伤刀的一种砧板。我也曾犯蠢买了一块玻璃砧板,那是真漂亮,还不掉屑,不变形。后果是我常得磨刀,而且刀子切在玻璃上面的刺耳声音太难受了。如果你不喜欢听见粉笔刮在黑板上的刺耳声,你肯定也不喜欢刀子切在玻璃砧板上的声音。

那世界上为什么还会有玻璃砧板石头砧板这个物种?因为颜值即是正义。它其实挺适合制作糕点,因为表面比较凉,不容易使面团里的黄油融化。虽然不推荐,但若你们好奇,给你们看看美貌的玻璃砧板长啥样。

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竹砧板

很多华人家庭会选择竹砧板。竹子是一种天然材料,生长快,可降解,做成砧板后外观也非常小清新,还很少变形。竹砧板有两种,一种是拼接的,就是把小块的竹片用胶水粘在一起;一种是整竹的,就是把竹子摊开压平,这样砧板表面就是一块完整的竹片。要做出有一定厚度的砧板,需要把几片竹片粘合在一起,不过至少食物不会直接接触到粘合剂。

别看竹子是草本植物,它加工后硬度还是很大的,可以用来砍骨头,剁肉馅。然而竹砧板也相当伤刀,这是因为相比于木材,竹子含有更多的二氧化硅、钙、钾等无机矿物。

塑料砧板

塑料砧板一般是聚乙烯(PE)、聚丙烯(PP)。我也用过塑料砧板,优点:

  • 轻。
  • 便宜。有多种颜色可搭配厨房。
  • 比较不伤刀。
  • 可进洗碗机,可用漂白水溶液消毒。

塑料砧板的缺点:

  • 易留下刀痕,细菌喜欢在刀痕里安家,所以使用后必须消毒。
  • 产生微塑料颗粒,虽然聚乙烯和聚丙烯无毒,但它的小颗粒会进入下水道、土地、海洋甚至人体中。
  • 容易染色,胡萝卜、甜菜头和其他深色食物切完后颜色根本洗不掉。
  • 不耐热,不小心靠近炉子就完了,也不能垫锅子。
  • 易变形,我没见过凌晨四点的洛杉矶,但我见过能像陀螺般在台面上旋转的塑料砧板。
  • 耐用度不及合成砧板、橡胶砧板和实木砧板,一旦变形、太多刀痕就需要更换。
  • 没有灵魂(WHAT?!)

我个人不喜欢塑料砧板,当初买它只是因为急用,但我不否认它性价比最高。

合成砧板

合成砧板是用木纤维、树脂和其他材料高温高压制成,是除了木头以外我最喜欢的一种材质。优点:

  • 用的是可持续发展的木材(人工栽种的木材),对环境友好。
  • 对刀具友好。
  • 不容易染色。
  • 不吸水,容易清洁不易发霉,可进洗碗机。
  • 耐高温,可当作锅垫。
  • 不易变形。

缺点是木纤维含量高的价格贵,而木纤维含量不高的会分层。

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橡胶砧板

通常是寿司师傅在用,当然也有小尺寸的可家用。天然橡胶非常贵,市面上的橡胶砧板通常是人工合成。优点:

  • 不伤刀程度仅次于实木砧板。
  • 不吸水,好打理,细菌不易滋生。
  • 可进洗碗机,可用漂白水。
  • 不变形。

缺点就是,它是很贵重的砧板,没错,一,很贵;二,很重。我曾经给老公买过一块,200 刀,有 20 磅重!

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实木砧板

我们华人用实木砧板的历史很悠久了,小时候家里都有一块圆形的树墩子砧板吧?这也是我的最爱。优点:

  • 对刀刃最友好。
  • 切菜时的感觉很棒,那种咚咚咚的声音让我觉得像大厨。
  • 抗菌。很多人以为木头砧板容易滋生细菌,其实事实相反,下面会解释。
  • 天然纹路和外观,厨房百搭。
  • 是可再生资源。

当然它也有一些缺点,比如重,不能泡水,不能进洗碗机,必须定期用油养护。

华人有种根深蒂固的想法认为木头砧板容易藏污纳垢滋生细菌,包括我也这么以为。但 NC State University 的一项研究发现,木头砧板,尤其是硬木,比如枫树,因为它能吸水,会把细菌一起吸进砧板内部,干燥后细菌就因缺水死亡了 [来源] 。因此是否容易滋生细菌,要看我们是否有好好清洗晾干,要是不洗干净 + 环境潮湿,不管什么砧板都会滋生细菌。

美国几种常见的木头砧板

  • Maple 枫木
  • Walnut 核桃木
  • Cherry 樱桃木
  • Beech 山毛榉
  • Acacia 乡思树
  • Teak 柚木
  • Mahogany 桃花心木
  • Hinoki 桧木

那么哪种木的砧板最好呢?选择你最喜欢的外观和经济能力能承受的就行了。这些木砧板都不适合频繁地剁骨头剁肉馅,美国人把这些活儿交给 butcher,家里顶多偶尔为之。这些木头中价格最便宜的是 Acacia 乡思树,木质较干、需要频繁保养;质地最硬的是 Teak 柚木,因而也最伤刀(当然比起玻璃砧板还是好多了)。

木头砧板的纹理(Grain)

木头砧板有两种纹理:End Grain 和 Edge Grain 。还有一种细分的 Face Grain,其实属于 Edge Grain 的一种。

  • End Grain 就是把树木横着锯断,能看到年轮的表面。由于木纤维的生长方向和刀砍下的方向相同,就好像刀在朝一片很密集的草丛中砍,对刀刃的损伤比较小。
  • Edge Grain 则是竖着切开树木。由于刀横砍木纤维的走向,就像在砍树一样,对刀刃的伤害相对来说大些。
  • 竖切面比较宽的一面也叫 Face Grain,如果是做家具之类,朝外的一面也叫 Face Grain,参见下图。
图:Groom+Style

对于挑选砧板来说,只要直到有横截面 End Grain 和竖切面 Edge Grain 就好了。

木砧板的保养

每次使用后,用热水(不是沸水)清洗砧板,不要放进洗碗机。洗后在通风处晾干。每 1-3 个月,用油涂一遍做保养,任何无气味的油都可以。市面上也有专门保养砧板的 mineral oil 。以下清洁剂对木砧板是安全的:

  • 白醋
  • 柠檬
  • 粗盐
  • 3% 双氧水
  • 小苏打
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其他需要考虑的因素

砧板还有几个小细节,可能会影响你购买的决定:

  • 形状。完全看个人喜好,有人喜欢圆形,有人喜欢方形,有人喜欢橄榄球形,有人喜欢加利福尼亚州形。
  • 尺寸。我在实际使用中,至少 9×13 寸才刚刚够用,那些如同 A4 纸大小的砧板形如鸡肋。
  • 厚度。越厚的砧板越重,也越稳。不过塑料砧板和合成砧板厚度有限,怕在台面上移动的话可以垫块毛巾。
  • 是否带导水槽(grove)。带导水槽的砧板切水份多的蔬菜时很好用,不会滴得台面上都是水,但它占据了砧板的表面积,实际使用面积略微变小了。

家里需要几块砧板?

至少两块,一块切生肉,一块切蔬菜。我个人会再买一块,切熟食和水果。甚至买多两块,分别切熟食和水果。有些人推荐用木头砧板切肉,塑料砧板切菜,但并没有给出理由。不过 NC State University 的研究员 Ben Chapman 的意见则刚好相反,推荐用塑料砧板切肉,木头砧板切菜切熟食,原因是塑料砧板可用漂白水溶液浸泡消毒,更加卫生。我觉得第二种意见颇有道理。

美国疾控中心:防止食物中毒的 4 条建议

我推荐的几款砧板

结合对刀刃友好程度、是否容易清洁、价格因素,我推荐实木砧板、合成砧板和塑料砧板做为日常使用。如果你能找到质量好的竹砧板也不错,目前我看到评价最好的竹砧板是上文贴的有机竹砧板,虽然只有 29 个评价,但一个差评都没有。

Joseph Joseph 结合了颜值和实用性,是塑料砧板界的吴彦祖。一套即包含四块砧板,肉菜生熟分开。虽然它分开了生熟砧板,但也需要清洗消毒晾干后才放入收纳盒,否则还是会互相污染,失去分类的意义。

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Epicurean 合成砧板近年人气大旺,顾客说用了几年也不发霉不变形,虽然有刀痕,用砂纸打磨后即焕然一新。

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同类产品还有 Sage 合成砧板。

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实木砧板则有太多太多牌子了,要好好淘。它价格偏贵,我建议去家居店亲眼看,亲手摸,实际感受一下。我买了一块越南桃花心木砧板,它的木质偏软,并非做砧板的上等材料,但是很便宜,尤其是做为一块 12 寸直径、 end grain 的砧板,20 刀以内的价格简直要偷笑。我不清楚它为什么这么便宜,同类型砧板都在 $100 左右呢。

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