If you have been on my site for very long at all then you have probably figured that I really enjoy using wooden utensils in the kitchen. I love that all of mine have been made by family-owned shops and that each one was lovingly hand carved. Take a stroll through an antique store and one thing I am sure you can find is old wooden utensils. They are made to last for generations but they also need to be cared for so that they will last for years to come. Here are some tips on how I care for mine.
Caring For Wooden Utensils:
1. After each use, wash the wooden utensil in hot water with a little mild dish soap. Do not allow the wooden utensils to soak in the water and don’t wash them in a dishwasher. The high temperature can cause the utensil to crack.
2. Rinse and then dry immediately with a dish towel. Any wooden utensil should be completely dry before you put it away.
3. When your utensil begins to look dry and dull, it’s time to apply what I call spoon butter. It’s a simple mixture that I make here at home. Depending on how often you use your utensils will decide how often they need to be oiled with the spoon butter. Some of mine get it weekly and the others may be just once a month.
4. Make sure your wooden utensil is clean and very dry before you begin the process of oiling your utensil.
5. Using a lint-free cloth or even your fingers, apply an even layer of the spoon butter to your wooden utensils. Allow the spoon butter to soak in for at least a few hours, then buff off any remaining oil with a clean dry cloth.
Wooden utensil butter is easy to make and valuable to have around. Once it is applied, it moisturizes and protects your woodenware. My homemade version is made with extra virgin olive oil, as opposed to mineral oil, so this is all natural and safe to use. Some people have concerns about the olive oil going rancid, I make a very small amount and use it frequently. I never worry about the wax going rancid on my woodenware, they are used frequently and this has never been an issue.
Beeswax can be ordered online or else purchased from your local health food store. Be sure that the beeswax you purchase is all natural.
I normally prefer to make up a small batch and keep it in a tin near my wooden utensils, this makes for easy access to use as needed.
1 part beeswax pastilles (1 Tbsp)
3 part olive oil (3 Tbsp)
small glass jar
Something to stir the mixture with
1. Gather supplies
2. Place the beeswax in the small glass jar and add the olive oil.
3. Heat about 1 quart of water in the saucepan over medium heat. When the water is simmering, turn the heat down to low. Lower the glass jar into the water and allow the oils to melt, be sure that water does not get into the oil mixture. Allow the oils to melt and then stir to make sure they are well combined.
4. Once oils are combined, pour the mixture into a small tin and allow the mixture to cool completely. Once cool, place the lid on, store for up to 3 months.
* This can also be used on all your cutting boards. Simply use the same process as you do on the utensils.
* The beeswax pastilles that I linked to may seem expensive but I use a lot of them for various products that I make and I trust the company.
With just a few simple steps, you can be sure that you are taking care of your wooden utensils, ensuring that they will someday be family heirlooms.
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