Wooden spoons made by hand are an art all unto themselves. They are special and seem to have a life and a story all of their own. Amongst the selection of spoons in the stores, handmade wooden spoons stand head and shoulders above the ones made from other materials.
These spoons are carefully crafted and shaped with love and care, and the minute you start using one, you build a relationship with it and it gradually blends itself comfortably into your hand. A hand-carved wooden spoon fits comfortably into any hand.
As those who make wooden spoons know, they can be moulded with a few simple tools or designed and worried over for months to get just the right texture or curve. From an ugly chunky piece of wood comes a product of style and beauty that will serve you faithfully through endless stews and stirrings in your kitchen for many years to come. Ready our easy guide on how to make a wooden spoon.
1. Select your Wood: it is better to use hard wood that is easy to work with such as poplar, soft maple or cherry. You will find that wood that has a fine grain and fewer pores will be easier to mould. Make sure your piece of wood is at least about 1/2” to 3/4'” thick, 2” to 3” wide and 10” to 12” long.
2. Template: It is a good idea to make a template for your handmade wooden spoons so that you have a picture in your mind of the finished product. Decide on your spoon size then draw the template accordingly – for example, a serving spoon handle is longer than a stirring spoon handle.
3. Shaping: Firstly, you are going to shape the inside of the bowl, then the handle and lastly the outside of the bowl. This allows you to have parallel surfaces at each shaping to grip in the vice.
4. Gouging: Using the gouging tool, start scraping at the inside of the bowl – be careful as the tool is very sharp. Also, do not gouge too deep – the spoon only has to be deep if it is going to be a serving spoon. Now get a pencil and draw the back of the bowl on the wood and follow those marking for carving the outside.
5. The Handle: The handle is done last as when you are doing the bowl you will be putting lots of pressure on it, and you need it to be firm while gouging and carving. To shape the handle you will work from the spoon bowl side towards the end of the handle. Here, you can use a rasp if you like depending on the handle shape you prefer.
6. Sandpaper: Now you can smooth out your beautiful spoon with sandpaper, and then apply some nourishing food safe oil of your choice to preserve and protect the wood.
Watch the video and learn how to make wooden spoon
Now you are all set to make your very first wooden spoon! Remember that it needs to be cared for carefully once you start using it. Do not let it get soaked in water for extra cleaning, and under no circumstances must it is put in the dishwasher – both of these methods will gradually weaken the wood. High quality handmade wooden spoons will last for a good many years in your kitchen. However, if cracks develop in the bowl area, you will obviously have to retire it.
Generally, it is better to use a hardwood, and bamboo – which is one of the hardest woods that cricket bats are made of - is becoming a popular spoon wood. It is also eco-friendly which should suit all the green planet people out there.
Wood is a natural product that has a little bit of a bend in it – meaning that it can easily scrape and stir in the best pots getting into proper contact with the food. Wood is also comfortable for your hands and eventually, the handle will mould itself to the shape of your hand.
But, there is nothing like your own, personal wooden spoon.