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Things I Can't Live Without In The Kitchen

My spurtle (or spirtle) I use the rounded end in the pot, not sure if that's the proper end (and frankly my dear...), but it's what feels right.
This came from the now [sadly] defunct Chapel Hill Museum's Gift Shop. 

I will kiss on the mouth the person who came up with tomato paste in a tube. GENIUS! You know the drill, the recipe calls for a mere two tablespoons of tomato paste, then you're left with practically a whole can that you can't just throw away - it's wasteful! With really good intentions (soup! tomorrow! promise!) you put it in the frig. And then that sad little tin languishes there, somehow sliding further and further back...until one night, you're pushing containers around looking for a snack..."What the hell's...oh, right, that can of tomato paste I opened...when was that...over a year...GAH! Call a HazMat team!" Perhaps those forgotten tomato paste cans are where they got the idea for "The Blob."

My short wooden spoon from Sign of The Bear Kitchenware in Sonoma, CA that fits in my hand. It's probably close to twenty years old. I recently found another spoon at Kohl's from The Food Network that seems promising, in case I need a back up.
If you ever find yourself in Sonoma, check out the store, it's right on the Plaza. It's a small store crammed to the gills with every kind of cooking utensil, books, linens. That's where I heard the Gipsy Kings for the first time.

The Joyce Chen kitchen scissors that I use at least once a day (thanks again SG!).


  1. Now you are talking girl since I do most of the cooking around here. Lets see there is the flat end wooden spatula that I use in most pot dishes, my Flavor Wave oven that cooks even frozen foods in quick time, my German made V slicer that I have had forever, my wine bottle opener (love it)and my Keurig coffee maker. Enjoyed your post today or can you tell?

  2. I like this post too, even though I'm not much of a cook. I love to see what people consider to be good tools. And, even though I would never buy or use anything from Kobo's, a local kitchenware store, I spent a good half hour only yesterday wandering around in there thinking well, if I WERE a cook, I'd certainly need this...and this...and that thing over there...But I have to say there were no spurtles. I've never seen a spurtle before. I love both the word and the object itself. Thanks.

  3. @ Andrea, I had to ask what it this crazy looking thing was used for at the counter.
    Haven't seen one since then, although closer to the mountains they may be more common.
    It is a great word isn't it?