In Praise of the Spatula

In Praise of the Spatula

Some time ago I was visiting my brother who, like me, has some strong opinions about how things should be done in the kitchen. As I was scraping pie filling out of a bowl and into a pie plate with a wooden spoon, he pointedly remarked on how inefficiently I was carrying out the task at hand and shoved a rubber spatula my way.

A month or so after that incident, I still had not learned the lesson. This time, we were at our mother’s house, and once again I was pouring pie filling from a bowl into a pie plate, using a spoon to assist in the process. After emptying the bowl, my brother took a rubber spatula salvaged another 1/2 cup of filling from what I thought was a pretty clean bowl.

So what’s the point. I now use a rubber spatula for everything from mixing ingredients to folding-in ingredients to releasing a Bundt cake from the pan. The rubber spatula is an extremely simple but versatile tool that can bring simplicity and elegance to the most mundane and trivial of tasks. Sometimes we get caught up in thinking that high tech cooking gadgets and toys are essential to creating the masterpiece, when really, all we need is a good spatula.

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