Sunday, August 28, 2011

August 28,2011: Wooden Spoons – Great Kitchen Helpers

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We were invited to a barbecue last night at a friend’s house. His sister, a real Georgia peach, was visiting and we got to meet her. She still retains her lovely Southern accent and while we were talking about Southern style food, she mentioned to me how many ways she uses a wooden spoon in the kitchen. I thought I’d share her tips with you!

When boiling foods like pasta or potatoes, lay the spoon across the top of the pot and it won’t boil over.

Test the heat of oil to see if it’s ready for frying food by placing the handle end of the spoon into the oil. If the oil bubbles around the spoon handle, it’s hot enough for frying!

Why use a wooden spoon when stirring a sauce on top of the sauce? Particularly if the recipe requires a long cooking time, a wooden spoon is ideal because the handle won’t get hot. Plus, it won’t scratch or otherwise damage your pots and pans.

When stirring any type of acid, citric or otherwise, into a recipe, a metal spoon can react and leave behind a metallic taste (the same reason you never marinate foods in a metal bowl). Use wood for the best results.

As I shared with you in my recipe for goat’s milk cheese, a wooden spoon is perfect to use for tying up your bundle of cheese cloth and allowing the whey to drip out. Along those same lines, a wooden spoon is a great tool for dipping a wick into wax when you make your own taper candles.

I’ve only got one caution to share when using wooden spoons in the kitchen – don’t use them for raw meats, especially chicken. It’s too difficult to completely sanitize them and you could run the risk of retaining dangerous bacteria in the spoon.


  1. Know how I test oil doneness?

    I place a kernnel of corn in the oil and cover with a lid. When you hear the pop - it's ready!

  2. That's a great tip, Tami, thanks for sharing!