As granite worktops make their way into more London homes, people are asking: can stone really be clean? The answer is a solid YES! and as a result, this food safe material is being found in commercial spaces, such as restaurants and hotels, as well as family homes. Here’s how to keep your granite worktops clean enough to eat off.
1. Get your granite worktops sealed
Granite is naturally waterproof and is one of the toughest substances around, so sealing isn’t necessary to protect the stone. However, it will close up any tiny dents or snags in the surface where bacteria might hide. It also helps prevent staining, so it’s essential for pale granite worktops. Granite worktops can be sealed after installation, so if you bought a London flat with a granite worktop in place, we can still seal it for you.
2. Take basic food hygiene measures
Mop up spills, clean the work surface after use, use a chopping board for meat, fish and other high-risk items, wash your hands… A food-safe granite worktop is no substitute for being hygienic in the kitchen. Many London kitchens are small, so food preparation areas have to multitask. As granite is a smooth, non-porous surface you can wipe it down with water or a cleaning product as often as you like without worrying it will be damaged.
3. Use appropriate cleaners
Granite is one of the toughest natural materials, but it can still be damaged by certain cleaners. In most cases, a damp cloth and perhaps some washing up liquid is all you need to clean your granite worktops. Washing up liquid is great at cutting through grease and food, so if you’ve been baking or cooking it’s a good way to deal with spills and smudges. Harsh chemical cleaners such as bleach can damage granite so should be avoided. Use a mild anti-bacterial cleaner if you need to. Avoid acids and alkalis.
4. Get any damage repaired
Granite worktops are extremely hard to damage, which is one reason they’re recommended for food preparation environments. However, should any damage occur to the worktop or surrounding material (grouting, backsplash, etc) it’s important to get it repaired straight away. Damaged areas are generally impossible to clean fully, making them a breeding ground for bacteria.
5. Don’t worry – just enjoy your cooking
Whether you’re making your famous Sunday morning fry-up or baking a dozen cupcakes for a charity bake sale, a granite worktop is tough enough to take the heat. Chopping directly onto granite will damage your knives and risks dulling the surface of your worktop, but it’s the ideal space for other food preparation tasks, such as kneading dough, rolling out pastry, icing biscuits or even making chocolates. Granite is a cool surface which helps keep pastry, dough and chocolate cool enough to work – one reason granite worktops are popular in some professional London kitchens!