My favorite spoon
How much would you be willing to pay for a great spoon? Ten dollars? Twenty? How about 22¢? Okay, I exaggerate: you actually have to pay 88¢.
My favorite spoon is a flat, straight-edged wooden one from Wal-Mart that comes in a pack of 4 wooden spoons for $0.88. Here’s my old one next to a new one I just picked up:
Why I love it:
1) The material: Wood is sturdy, so it doesn’t bend while mixing heavy dough. I make cookies and bread a lot, and plastic spoons just don’t have the strength to mix well. It’s also perfect for the surfaces of your pots and pans; it doesn’t scratch non-stick or enamel. Wood does have a tendency to stain, but that’s not really a con for me. It kinda becomes seasoned: with every use and wash, it gains color and the wood seems to get harder and tougher. At the same time, the material will wear itself into the shape of whatever you use it for most:
The older spoon has rounded edges, and the rough, splintery exterior has smoothed down so it’s comfortable to handle.
2) The shape: For a mixing spoon, you really, really want a round handle. I have some wooden utensils with handles similar to this one, but those can be extremely uncomfortable to hold, especially while mixing heavy dough.
I LOVE the straight edge to this spoon. Whether you’re getting the last of the shortening out of the bottom of a measuring cup, scraping the bottom of a sauce pot, or chopping up meat or vegetables in a saute pan, this spoon is perfect. There are other wooden utentils with larger straight edges (kinda like this) which I love for just scraping (e.g. browning ground meat, which requires scraping but not so much stirring), but for mixing and stirring, the smaller head is the best.
I have many wooden spoons, but this is the one that I always grab, whether cooking or baking. I now have doubles of the other, round-edged spoons that came with it, but I only go to those when all of the straight ones are dirty!
I have only two cons to this spoon: It has absolutely no bowl, so it’s impossible to scoop up anything to taste or transfer; both sides are perfectly flat. The other is that it only comes in the one length (12″). The spoons it comes with are 10″, 12″ and 14″; I wish that this one came in assorted lengths! I would use them all.
Oh, and I guess the last con would be that I can’t just buy bunches of these by themselves; I have to get the whole set. But for 88¢, it’s still a great deal. And if anyone is interested in some never-used extra spoons, just let me know. 🙂
(P.S. I forgot to mention: never wash wooden spoons in the dish washer. They will crack, and your beloved spoon of many years will be worthless. 😦 )