Finish for a kitchen knife block?

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I just finished sanding a little knife block to hold a Chinese cleaver and a small chef's knife. I used some red oak that was lying around the shop, gluing it all together with Titebond II. Now: I think I recall that vegetable oil is the right finish for food-contact woodwork; my questions start with this: Wouldn't a vegetable oil finish eventually get rancid? SWMBO has a hellishly sensitive sniffer, and I'm afraid that if the oil in the wood starts to get a little manky two of my favorite knives will be either banished altogether or sentenced to a life lying naked in the silverware drawer. What *is* the right finish? We have quite a few different oils in the pantry: peanut, olive, canola, corn, and can get stuff like safflower, soy, sunflower and more that don't leap to mind right now. Of course, I can also get the more traditional woodworking oil finishes. I am blessed with choices and cursed with ignorance - help!
Thanks
--

Jim
"Value nothing but truth, compassion, and love"
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I use walnut oil for my cherry wood kitchen countertops. It is semi-hardening with no noticeable odor.
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Food contact? Are you going to tenderize the meat by beating it with the wood block?
Any normal wood finish oil is just fine. Danish oil, varnish oil, mineral oil, latex paint will do too.
Avoid the cooking oils.
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Jim Willemin wrote: > I just finished sanding a little knife block to hold a Chinese cleaver and > a small chef's knife. I used some red oak that was lying around the shop, > gluing it all together with Titebond II.
30 years ago, I used boiled linseed oil on a couple of knife racks.
Poured the BLO in a pot, heated it up on the stove, then dunked the racks into it.
As this is being written, no fatalities to report.
Lew
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I always wonder when this question comes up, which seems to be about once a month.
I make treen ware for fun, and always use EVOO to finish the spatulas, spoons, cutting boards, stirrers, tasters and beaters I make. I use just about any wood besides red oak, or some of the more tubular looking pieces of white.
Yet... in the last two decades I have never had any of the EVOO oiled kitchen ware go rancid, stink, rot, or pass disease to anyone that uses them. Cooking is my second hobby, and I use all of my pieces frequently, as do many I have given them to as gifts.
I stir fry in vegetable oil, pan fry chicken breasts in vegetable oils, and a mulititude of other tasks that expose my treenware to natural, non or slow curing oils. And while the spatulas and turners absorb vegetable oils and animal fats, no disease or pestilence to report. I cut bloody meats (15 - 18 lb pork loins into chops, raw chickens, and raw fish) on my cutting boards frequently with no problems. I beat/stir concotions with raw eggs and vegetable oils in them with my wooden beaters and haven't had foul odor one. This nonsense has been going on for years, and EVERYTHING has been treated with plain EVOO.
I know that many of us have their own favorite finishes, but I think that those that are afraid of vegetable finshes should use stainless utensils. So do any of the people here realize that for many years it was animal fats that were used to cure these utensils? Sometimes nothing at all? I have a great maple cutting board that I have had for years that I have never put a drop of finish on, and it is great. It has picked up some oils somewhere though as you can see the difference in the appearance of the wood on the front and back of the board. So that means it has picked up animal fats and oils from food prep. Yet... no smell.
A GOOD FIELD TEST: Take a piece of scrap from your project and treat it with vegetable oil of some sort. Wipe off the excess oil. See how long it takes to "go rancid". Your grandkid's grandkids will be shaving by the that happens.
I am going with Mr. Pawlowski on this one.... just put something on it! You'll be fine!
Robert
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Robert,
Rachel Raye loves you.
TomNie
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This a sure tell as to what we are watching in our spare time.
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Tom Nie wrote:

And Tom, I love her right back. I have only seen a couple of shows (I have no cable or satellite) but she is as cute as can be, and I have seen her eat a Chicago dawg and drink beer like an old pro.
Me like.
Robert
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snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote:
> And Tom, I love her right back. I have only seen a couple of shows (I > have no cable or satellite) but she is as cute as can be, and I have > seen her eat a Chicago dawg and drink beer like an old pro.
And tell me you are an Emeril fan like me.
Well at least as long as he sticks to coon ass food.
Lew
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Lew Hodgett wrote:

You bet. I love some of the cajun stuff, and being in S. Texas, the spicier the better. Apparently when Emeril came here a couple of times for shows (San Antonio) he liked it well enough to become friends with a couple of the owners of our better Mexican cafes. He slips in town every once and a while, and on a slow day they the new channels try to get a few words from him.
Locals here got quite a snort out of him trying some of the hotter sauces served with the local fare. He did it on camera, and there was no place to hide. He was sweating like he was in a sauna.
I don't know why they laughed at him... me and my amigos set ourselves on fire with that stuff all the time!
Robert
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Gotta love Alton Brown for his factual background information IF you can get past his nerdy, goofy delivery.
And Paula's recipes, while usually delicious, weren't written with a heart specialist in mind.
Robert, you need a satellite. Considering the crap on broadcast, the Food Channel and Discovery, etc. can be interesting and fun. Finally plunged for one of those DVR's (TIVO kind) and that's COOL. When I can't hear what they've said (old ears?) I just back that sucker up and replay until I figure it out.
TomNie (the one told to lose 20#)
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Tom Nie wrote:

What satellite service are you using? I know there are a lot of deals out there right now, but I also know some services are better than others. I know what you mean about all the crap on network. There are only (literally) a couple of shows I watch pretty regularly on network, but then I never miss my favorite show on Fox, "24".
The good side to all of that is that I don't spend much time at all in front of the boob tube. With 24 on hiatus, unless I find something on PBS my TV will stay off for two to three days at a time. But on the other hand, I do like some of the info shows that satellite has to offer and if I had something better to watch I might.
Robert
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Robert, Sorry, I've got Charter catv.
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DirecTV is the only satellite associated with the Tivo brand DVR, I believe.
An Tivo is what you want, if for nothing other than the reqind/play feature that anticipates where you meant to start playing the show you atr fast-forwarding or reqinding and starts playing it there. You can be fast forwarding through the 4 minute block of commercials on FoodTV and when you see your show back on, just hit play (not play, rewind, play, fast-forward, rewind and play) and the show starts playing just about where you want it to.
I had a generic DVR for a year and hated it. Took the joy right out of skipping commercials.

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I have had the DirecTV Tivo set up for about 3 years now and love it. I was with Dish Network for too many years. Word is however that Tivo is being dropped by DirecTV and I could not fine any Tivo units on the DirecTV site yesterday. They are showing a new DVR with no reference to Tivo.
Tivo by itself however can now record 2 satellite channels at one time but not 2 HD channels. Go figure.
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Leon, do subscribe to the HD channels? The ones like tnthd, discoveryhd. They're in the lower channel range. If so, is it worth it? I do the football package in hd.
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No not yet. I have no HD anything yet but I am getting ready to take the plunge. I noticed that DirecTV now offers, "In Houston" Local HD through Satellite vs. reg antenna HD local NBC, ABC, CBS, and FOX. Additionally the HD channel package is about the cost of a premium set of channels like HBO and ShowTime at about the same cost. IIRC about 8 to 9 HD channels in that package not including the 4 local HD channels. IMHO those extra premium HD channels for about $10 per month seems reasonable.
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Ok, I was trying to convince myself of it. Think I'll go ahead and do it. Our locals broadcast primetime and sports in HD so that's no thing. I'm going to have to check the TNT race schedule and see how many more they're going to do. I don't do ANY of the movie channels, never home long enough to enjoy a whole movie. About the time I get interested, the phone rings and I got to go. Thanks I'll look into it.
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OK, guys, while we're wandering OT into the outside world, a new wide-screen, DLP, HD, etc is on my wish list (next?). And whether it's DLP or ???, 1080 dpi or ??? is another whole world of research and opinion I've found.
TV mfgrs definitely sell a lot sizzle with their steak - or is that BS with the bull?
Whatever. People keep raving about being able to see the blades of grass at a football game, etc. using HDTV. As much as I love nature programs, that's interesting. Also, I could see Giada a little better :).
I got SWMBO to go along with our woodturningburningcarving stuff - at about $6,000 less than it actually ended up ("This IS the end isn't it?") - by promising to sell my little old red convertible. Still got the convertible. Now I'm trying to use that as the way to get the HDTV. She no longer trusts me, I think.
So which DPI - DLP - etc is the best?
TomNie

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Tom Nie wrote:

Best thing to do is find a store that has an HD feed and look at them. None are perfect, prices are all over the map and don't necessarily relate to quality or performance. The 37 inch and 42 inch Sceptre, Benq, and Westinghouse 1920x1080 models are exceptionally good value IMO.
Also, find a store that has a good (will cost $3K+, not the ones that CompUSA and Best Buy stock) front projector--I warn you though, they'll spoil you.
Important gotcha--make sure whatever you get has an HDCP input--that's a new Hollywood paranoia scheme that has been mandated for new hardware and the lack of it may break some older sets.

--
--John
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