Thoughts On Wooden Plates?

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I ordered some semi-decent plain edge steak knives and have been considering picking up some wooden plates for steak, roast, etc.

Thoughts, inputs, recommendations?
 

WildBoar

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I bought some through Boardsmith v1.0 (RIP :( )quite a few years back. A woodworking buddy of his made a few. I thought they would work well with Butch's steak knives. They had a strong smell that took many months to dissipate. We've only used them a few times, as we usually slice steaks, pork chops, etc. on a cutting board to make it easier to serve our son and because my wife likes to pretend she can only eat 2-3 slices. Well okay, maybe one more. Okay, I'll have another one. And now maybe these last two slices... :D

There was nothing special about the plate maker. In the end it comes down to finding them in the size you want, and at the level of quality you want. Etsy and other place are full of people who make/ sell them. And being out in the PNW I have to imagine there are many people who make them. If they use decent wood (and no checks/ splits), have good equipment for turning them, and do a good job sanding/ sealing them you should be fine.
 

cooktocut

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I think they’re great, since they preserve the edge of my steak knives for a little bit longer. Only down side is you can’t use serrated, and you’d better be willing to clean and dry them once you’re done, as opposed to letting food or liquid sit on them.

That being said though, I’ve had some that are not designed properly and will warp or break easily. These, because of their thickness and the high wall, will probably never do that.

 
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Yeah, cleaning and maintenance won't be an issue. I do all my dishes by hand the same night I cook and seem to always be adding board wax or mineral oil to some wood thing or another in the kitchen.

Thanks for the link @cooktocut. Some good looking stuff there.
 

Jovidah

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I have some and I love them. Mine are just some relatively cheap acacia wood ones I got at some restaurant supply store. It's a bit hard to find them but 'general mass market' wooden plates do exist. They hold up reasonably well although some are getting a slight bend after like 5 years, but admittedly I haven't been all that dilligent about keeping them properly oiled (although the top probably sees enough fat from food, the bottom doesn't).

It's awesome because you can use proper straight edge knives on them without ruining them, and for some unexplicable reason I find them really nice and comfy to eat from, also for stuff like breakfast.
The major downside however is that they can't go in the dishwasher, so expect them to be a secondary nieche item for certain occasions. When I had no dishwasher I'd use them for almost everything but now I use them a lot less because... who likes dishwashing.

Ideally you want something that has some kind of a lip or rim so that if there's a good amount of sauce or fluid involved with what you're eating it doesn't spill over. That means completely flat plates are out. That also makes plates like these kinda suck as a cheese platter or something unless you're using tall knives, since the rim tends to get in the way.

You should be able to find relatively cheap options if you dig around. I think mine were just over 5 euros a piece when I bought them, and while they're not 'heirloom hand down to your granchildren' quality, and probably gonna last at most a decade with the way I (don't) maintain them, they're at least 'good enough'.

Long story short: the main negative is maintenance. Need to wash by hand, and preferably sooner rather than later, but other than that they're awesome. They're the carbon knives of the plate world. :p

One fair point to make though is that if you don't intend to do a lot of saucy stuff there's no reason you couldn't just use a cutting board instead. Can be relatively cheap. I have to admit that if it's just me and my girlfriend half the time we just eat off the cutting board as well. :D
 

WiriWiri

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Unless I get to eat a turkey leg, wear a paper crown, and yell at people jousting in aluminum armor, then I don’t want a wooden plate.

Sadly, it‘s just too much of a push for me to think of chivalrous American knights jousting. No disrespect HHC, but when you folks mentIon wooden plates the Flintstones spring to mind first.

I’m not down with the Yabba-doos here - I don‘t want an extra set of high maintenance discs cluttering up my small house alongside the other plates. Reckon this is one where I’ll either opt for less expensive knives or take the hit of sharpening after the occasional steak. Roasts can be carved on board and dished out, so the number of uses seems too low to justify the wooden clutter.

You can always serve the steaks on chopping boards with juice grooves. But this is a fine line - before you know it you’ll be doling out your accompanying fries in small fryer baskets and drinking your beer from a jamjar, like any old hipster wanker

On balance, I think I’ll stick to the normal plates me old china.
 
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Sadly, it‘s just too much of a push for me to think of chivalrous American knights jousting. No disrespect HHC, but when you folks mentIon wooden plates the Flintstones spring to mind first.

I’m not down with the Yabba-doos here - I don‘t want an extra set of high maintenance discs cluttering up my small house alongside the other plates. Reckon this is one where I’ll either opt for less expensive knives or take the hit of sharpening after the occasional steak. Roasts can be carved on board and dished out, so the number of uses seems too low to justify the wooden clutter.

You can always serve the steaks on chopping boards with juice grooves. But this is a fine line - before you know it you’ll be doling out your accompanying fries in small fryer baskets and drinking your beer from a jamjar, like any old hipster wanker

On balance, I think I’ll stick to the normal plates me old china.

Nah it's cool cuz once we kicked the pretentious snobs out of our country, we quit caring what they thought.

I do believe I'm sufficiently motivated to buy me a couple now.
 

Jovidah

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You could just start with a few cheapos to see if it's working for you. I do understand that some might not want to bother with the extra fuss so it's probably not for everyone, and admittedly I wouldn't recommend replacing all your plates with wooden ones; it's more of an 'extra' thing... like... expensive knives! ;)

But for some inexplicable reason I found them really pleasant to eat off, can't really explain it. Maybe the feeling of knife edge on ceramic subconsciously just irked me too much, but there's just something pleasant and warm about eating off wooden plates for me.
Can be very much... personal preference, but don't knock it until you've tried it.

Cutting boards can work, but like I said it can become a problem when you hvae a good amount of sauce / liquid, and the shape isn't necessarily convenient.
 
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You could just start with a few cheapos to see if it's working for you. I do understand that some might not want to bother with the extra fuss so it's probably not for everyone, and admittedly I wouldn't recommend replacing all your plates with wooden ones; it's more of an 'extra' thing... like... expensive knives! ;)

But for some inexplicable reason I found them really pleasant to eat off, can't really explain it. Maybe the feeling of knife edge on ceramic subconsciously just irked me too much, but there's just something pleasant and warm about eating off wooden plates for me.
Can be very much... personal preference, but don't knock it until you've tried it.

Cutting boards can work, but like I said it can become a problem when you hvae a good amount of sauce / liquid, and the shape isn't necessarily convenient.

I actually don't mind the maintenance and prefer something a little nicer here. Probably just get two of them for those special occasions when the wife and I splurge on an expensive piece of beef.
 
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I actually don't mind the maintenance and prefer something a little nicer here. Probably just get two of them for those special occasions when the wife and I splurge on an expensive piece of beef.

I like a nice steak. For the most part, the steak that I do is superior to the options in the community; though I do like to be served.

It is just the wife and me now. When I do a steak, I rest it for 10 minutes before I cut it. And because I have such nice knives I cut it thin. I cut the whole steak. I put the cutting board with the steak and tongs on the table. We help ourselves. The meat is cut thin enough that a "steak knife" is not necessary. My wife like it this way. I like it too.

Thinly sliced leftovers are ready for a salad the next day or two.

Hope you find something that you enjoy doing.
 
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Wooden plates, eh? Tempting, a bit. But my steak knives are serrated, not to avoid sharpening, but because I really like the raggedness of a piece of steak cut with a steak knife with not-too-fine serrations. It seems to have more flavor on the tongue somehow.

I think I'd be more tempted by wooden utensils, because you get to hold them, and enjoy the feel of the wood.
 

Jovidah

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Wooden handles are fine, but wooden spoons and other stuff that has wood touching your mouth and tongue are the devil. I just don't like the taste. :p
 

JASinIL2006

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I really cannot fathom using wooden plates. The porosity of wood and it's ability to hold flavors/smells would be a huge turnoff for me. We have a set of Chicago Cutlery steak knives that we received as a wedding gift 30+ years ago that are still going strong even though they've been used on regular plates.

Hard pass from me on the wooden plates...
 

Justinv

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I really cannot fathom using wooden plates. The porosity of wood and it's ability to hold flavors/smells would be a huge turnoff for me
I Agree. Mineral oil is petroleum that doesn’t cure and just gets in your food. No thanks. Pure linseed or walnut oil cures but that takes forever. Maybe polymerized linseed oil is better. I just use glass or ceramic plates and have no interest in wood plates. You can also use thick paper plates.
 

cooktocut

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Idk guys... I don't have to oil mine at all. They don't get dry or crack, and they don't hold onto smells or color. Added benefit of being lighter, better looking... I think it depends a lot on how they're finished. The ones I linked above are the best of any I've tried. Any arguments made against wooden plates could easily be made for wooden cutting boards too, since all of our food touches that first before anything else.

Also kind of nice to have a stack of plates that I can handle semi-roughly without jarring sounds or breakage. Grabbing a ceramic plate out from under a stack and having them all come crashing down is akin to nails on a chalkboard to me.
 

Justinv

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Any arguments made against wooden plates could easily be made for wooden cutting boards too, since all of our food touches that first before anything else.

I don’t do wood cutting boards for the same reason.

Maybe the answer is plastic plates!
 
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Made dinner at a friends house last night, she pulled out wooden plates for us to eat on. I said, why don’t you just use porcelain, so much easier to deal with, toss it in the dishwasher.

she said when my toddler drops it, it won’t break. First good reason I’ve heard for using them.

I may just buy her some nice melamine plates though.
 

Jovidah

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I really cannot fathom using wooden plates. The porosity of wood and it's ability to hold flavors/smells would be a huge turnoff for me. We have a set of Chicago Cutlery steak knives that we received as a wedding gift 30+ years ago that are still going strong even though they've been used on regular plates.
Never encountered this issue after using a set for 5 years plus. Although admittedly I don't leave them sitting overnight after eating fish off them.

What's somewhat surprising to me though is how many people are knocking wooden plates on a forum where the majority of the people use carbon knives. Don't knock 'em until you've tried them!

I may just buy her some nice melamine plates though.
It may take a bit more effort but those aren't completely bombproof either (speaking from experience). :D
 
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Idk guys... I don't have to oil mine at all. They don't get dry or crack, and they don't hold onto smells or color. Added benefit of being lighter, better looking... I think it depends a lot on how they're finished. The ones I linked above are the best of any I've tried. Any arguments made against wooden plates could easily be made for wooden cutting boards too, since all of our food touches that first before anything else.

Also kind of nice to have a stack of plates that I can handle semi-roughly without jarring sounds or breakage. Grabbing a ceramic plate out from under a stack and having them all come crashing down is akin to nails on a chalkboard to me.

Most of the plates are likely coated in some kind of food-safe finish and it shouldn't be an issue.
 
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