Do you have a treasured cooking accessory? Perhaps it's a special spoon that belonged to your favorite aunt or a set of bowls your mother gave you? It could be a pot that was the one your grandmother used to make soup or a kettle your father used to make tea? Maybe it's the rolling pin your grandmother always used to roll out pie crust. I do. I have several special rolling pins, pots, spoons and other accessories that make cooking in my kitchen special. One of the accessories, in particular, has a strange history...
One of my favorite spoons is wooden. When I was growing up, I was, to put it delicately, naughty. I was a climber, explorer, fearless and klutzy. On their own, these character traits are not too dangerous but combined with the fact I was naughty, the traits are lethal. I am single-handedly responsible for a large portion of the gray hair on my mother's head! Add into the equation my two brothers and the poor woman was done for, truly. The three of us were always up to some mischief and my mother was not a very strong disciplinarian. (If you're wondering about whether or not much of my mother's possessions made it through our childhood, stop, they didn't.) As children of the 1970's, we were threatened, a lot, with, 'Wait till your father gets home!' And, 'Don't make me come over there!' Did we listen? What do you think? To gain our attention and try to scare us, my mother used to bang on things with wooden spoons. She'd bang on things like counters, tables and occasionally, our bottoms. (We called them, "beating spoons.") Mostly, the wooden spoons broke. Mostly... I have, in my kitchen, the only remaining "beating spoon" left in our family's existence. It is treasured and makes me laugh. (My youngest brother wants it) but too bad, so sad! It's mine!
I also have a vintage yellow pyrex bowl that belonged to my mother-in-law, Jan. Jan used it to make my husband, Russell's, favorite chocolate caked called a "Wacky Cake," and I still use it for the same purpose to this day. Additionally, I have my grandmother, Mary's, turquoise colander. Grandma used this colander for everything from washing grapes (as I do) to straining pasta (as I do too.) It hangs from the pot rack in my kitchen where I can see it all the time and use it whenever I need it. It makes me smile.
I think little kitchen accessories can enhance the cooking experience and little touches can make a house a home. I think sharing family stories with our children about time spent in kitchens connects them to their food history. Remember, creating and sharing food is a loving act and food is created using accessories handed down from our family, it becomes even more meaningful.
Do you have a special accessory you were given and/or you plan to pass down to your child? Please share it in the comments section.
Avid home cook and passionate instructor