Antique Kitchen Utensils and Cookware

News flash: Kay Bennett is the randomly selected winner of Edith’s author apron! Congrats.

We are celebrating the release of When The Grits Hit The Fan today. Here’s a bit about the book:

Before she started hosting dinners for Indiana University’s Sociology Department at Pans ‘N Pancakes, Robbie never imagined scholarly meetings could be so hostile. It’s all due to Professor Charles Stilton, who seems to thrive on heated exchanges with his peers and underlings, and tensions flare one night after he disrespects Robbie’s friend, graduate student Lou. So when Robbie and Lou go snowshoeing the next morning and find the contentious academic frozen under ice, police suspect Lou might have killed him after their public tiff. To prove her friend’s innocence, Robbie is absorbing local gossip about Professor Stilton’s past and developing her own thesis on the homicide—even if that means stirring up terrible danger for herself along the way . . .

Robbie not only runs a cafe but she also sells antique cookware and utensils. Wickeds, do you have an old pan or utensil you love? Was it handed down from someone in your family? Do you remember them using it? Do you still use it or is it a treasure that provides warm memories?

Jessie: Congratulations, Edith on your latest release! I do have a favorite piece of cookware. I have a Bundt pan that belonged to my grandmother. She was an avid baker and every time I use the pan I think fondly of her. I imagine her peering over my shoulder encouraging me to tweak the recipe just a little bit. She was a big fan of adding a little something extra to whatever it was she was making. She’s been gone for many years now and often when I’m in my kitchen I wish I could pick up the phone and give her a call.

Liz: Congrats Edith! Can’t wait to read about Robbie’s next adventure. I don’t have a treasured piece of cookware, but as an Italian girl I do have an affinity for wooden spoons. My mother used to use them for many things – ostensibly for stirring sauce, but most notably as a threat to get us kids to do what she wanted!

Sherry: What an amazing journey to a tenth book!, Edith I’m so happy for you! I have an old butter paddle (at least I think that’s what it is) from my grandparent’s farm in Novinger, Missouri. I don’t have an recollection of seeing my grandmother use it or even seeing it at their house. But it was in a box of stuff from their basement that ended up with me. I’ve had it on display on and off in various homes. I put the pen in the picture to give a sense of it’s size.

Julie: Edith/Maddie, huge congratulations! I do have a few utensils that were my grandmother’s. A metal measuring cup that is bent up, and hand beater that gets a little stuck after a few rotations, and a glass Pyrex coffee pot that I have yet to make a decent cup of coffee with, but that reminds me of her, so it sits on my stove as a talisman.

Barb: I have lots of kitchen items from my family. I have my mother’s Christmas cookie cutters, very important because they need to be small, because the butter cookies are so short. I have pie plates from my mother-in-law I use all the time. I have the square, tin pans my grandfather made for my grandmother’s famous “cakes” that were really open-faced. fruit tarts. I have the recipe, too, but I’ve always been afraid to try it. And I have my Corningware casserole dishes from my wedding–which now are practically antiques!

Edith: Thanks so very much, my dear Wicked Cozy friends! I love all these stories. I still use my mother’s biscuit cutters, frosting spreader, pie pan, and sifter, along with a pair of cookie shapers – or are those butter ball rollers? Can you detect a theme? She loved baking – and was talented at it – but didn’t really care for savory cooking, although she made nightly dinners for our family of six.kitchenutensils

Readers: Do you have an old pan or utensil you love? What is its story?



25 Thoughts

  1. Congratulations again on the release of When The Grits Hit The Fan.
    I don’t have any old pans or utensils that I love because my mom saw fit to supply me with so much new kitchen stuff she bought from QVC and HSN. I had an old blender that was my grandmother’s, but when it began to smell like it was burning whilst I was using it I had to say goodbye. I do have beautiful platinum embossed dishes, including wide-rimmed teacups with saucers, that were my grandmother’s. I feel special when I drink out of them.

  2. I love these stories! Hand me downs are the best. I have my grandmother’s meat fork and spatula, a set that screams 1950 so I love it. I have a meat grinder from my other grandmother. I haul it out from the basement once a year when I use her recipe to make shrimp boulettes. Like Liz, I love wooden spoons but no family ties, only my own.

    1. My mom had a meat grinder, too, but it’s long since gone elsewhere. Except – there’s one in one of the Country Store Mysteries, of course!

      1. My mother had a meat-grinder attachment for her old Kitchenaid stand mixer. I still have the mixer (but don’t use it)–wonder where the grinder is?

  3. I have an old wooden spoon which was my mother-in-law’s, but no story to go with it.

  4. Ah, another cookware connoisseur! After inheriting pieces from two grandmothers and my mother, I’ve been collecting items on my own, particularly bakeware, which is still wonderful to use. I made the mistake of going to a local auction a couple of years ago and bought a 105-piece lot of antique utensils and more. Which means I have 12 antique egg-beaters (all different) and 12 curved choppers (and an antique wooden bowl to go with them–and I tested them all to find the best), and a Shaker spice box that still smells of spices, and . . . too much more. Gee, maybe Robbie could use some.

  5. At the moment we’re cleaning out FIL’s apartment prior to putting it on the market. We found a carton of MIL’s pots and pans that she used exclusively for Passover. We picked 3 of her 60+ yr old fry pans for ourselves. You have to understand, with the size of our kitchen it’s something in means something has to go out. I gave 7 sets of good China to the Salvation Army since we have all we need and so do our children.

    I’d love to hit the lottery, sell our co-op and buy a house with a large kitchen with lots of storage cabinets for every gadget and tool I could dream of using.

  6. I have my grandmother’s wooden rolling pin. I found it doesn’t work as well without the cheesecloth cover she had (that fell apart), but I refuse to get rid of it even though I have a new marble rolling pin that works much better.

  7. I don’t have any old cooking utensils. Unless you count the microwave I took when we were cleaning out my grandparent’s house.

  8. Congratulations, Edith, on the new book(s) and great reviews!

    Fun topic. I have several thing from my parents and grandparents–my grandfather was the one who was a fan of kitchen gadgets. But my favorite is an aluminum carving tray with an embossed pattern of flying ducks and cat tails and removable Bakelite handles. I bought it at a rummage sale soon after we moved to Boston because it was exactly like my mom’s, and I was homesick. I still use it for every turkey and BBQ, and it always makes me smile. I think the original moved out with us from Wisconsin.

  9. I have a couple of cast iron pans from my mom’s house and her glass rolling pin, designed to hold ice for keeping the dough chilled. I’d rather let others make the pie, though, and wish that I could go to Pans ‘N Pancakes for real. Great book! (Amazon is finally allowing reviews to post).

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