I am a dismal cook (like, really bad. Like… remedial cooking classes would be too advanced for me). So, about once a year, I involve myself in collecting something that lulls me into thinking I’m not such a bad cook. At the moment it’s wooden spoons and spatulas. Last year it was chef’s knives. I’ve also gone through a cheese board phase and a pots and pans phase that led to the purchase of not one but two giant woks that hang happily unused from my pot rack, where I bump my head into them regularly. I swear I am not a conspicuous consumption ninny, but I do admit to the occasional minor purchase to soothe my insecurities. There.
When I go through one of these phases, I learn everything I can about my implement of choice. It was in my quest to learn all things spoon that I became informed that wooden spoons and spatulas require something called seasoning. This involves rubbing them with oil (both coconut and olive are recommended, so, being a ride-or-die kind of chick, I went for both) and sticking them in the oven for 2 minutes. Here’s what I learned in my quest to create well-seasoned wooden spoons.
1. Apparently wax paper catches fire? The spoons aren’t supposed to touch metal, I read, so that ruled out my usual go-to, aluminum foil. How to protect the spoons? Wax paper seemed like the obvious choice. Isn’t it like a bakey type of thing? No. No it is not. It spontaneously combusts beautifully, but this is not good for your spoons. Take note. Ruin a dish rag instead.
2. When you put greasy spoons in your oven, they leak oil all over the place (lesson 2b: dish rags aren’t oil proof!) and that fills your kitchen with smoke. Might not want to undertake this project while the kids are trying to get to sleep on a school night lest they come dashing down the stairs to see if Mommy has finally succeeded in making the oven explode.
3. Seasoned spoons look exactly like unseasoned spoons.
4. If you only use 2 of your 10 wooden cooking implements regularly and keep the other 8 on display in a utensil holder on the counter to prove to the world you are not a bad cook, you may not need to season all of them, especially if they’re mostly the cheapie ones from Target.
5. The internet is full of people who take their wooden spoons very seriously. If you are one of those people and want to read tips from someone who is less inept than I am, consider checking out the spoon-seasoning instructions here and here.
I will confess to ordering more wooden spoons yesterday with some rewards points I had stashed with Crate and Barrel (which is what kicked off the rehab project on my existing wooden spoons and spatulas) so there may be a phase II of the Great Spoon Project. Luckily, I am going on a date tonight, so I will be prevented from setting anything on fire in my oven at least for one night, but stay tuned in case I come up with crazier things to do to my spoons when the new ones arrive.
By the way, I also discovered that there are some gorgeous wooden spoons out there. Check out the amazing olive wood utensils and other beautiful things from this Etsy seller. It must be the Spaniard in me, but I am madly in love with olive wood: click here. Also here.