Thursday, March 22, 2012

What is This Spoon For?

One of the most common questions people have when dining in The Escoffier Room at The Culinary Institute of America is: "What is this spoon for?".

With white table cloth, fine dining restaurants, far and few in between in America, it isn't hard to understand why the vast majority of people don't know what all of the silverware is for. So, I've made you a little field guide to fine dining. So, next time you're planning on dining out at a top of line restaurant, you will be ahead of the game...and look trés soigné.

 This cute little guys are COCKTAIL FORKS. They are usually used for shellfish or amuse bouches. Their little tines are great for getting into those shells and grabbing tiny things.

 This pair is constituted of a FISH FORK and FISH KNIFE. The little tines on the for are perfect for the delicate flakes of fish, while the knife is crafted with a point at the top to work around any larger bones and stand up and remove pin bones.
Here we have three of the most common forks: DESSERT, ENTREMET, and ENTREE. The Dessert Fork is recognizable by the elongated cut in between the second and third tine. The Entremet Fork has closer, thinner tines than The Dinner Fork, perfect for grabbing more delicate, appetizer items, while the thicker tines of The Dinner Fork are crafted for holding onto thicker proteins.
Spoons! A bunch of them! Starting from the left you have an ENTREMET SPOON, BOUILLON SPOON, and a SAUCE SPOON. The Entremet Spoon is good for a variety of uses including soup, desserts, and getting the sauce out of a shallow bowl. A Bouillon Spoon is perfect for getting down into a bouillon soup cup. Note how the curve of the spoon matches the curve of the cup. Lastly, The Sauce Spoon, is used for getting all of the sauce off of the plate. The little notch cut into the right side is so that the spoon locks onto the rim of the plate, ensuring every morsel is scraped up.

This guy with the long handle is an ICE TEA SPOON. The long handle gets all the way to bottom of the glass so all of your simple sugar can be swirled in.
 Awwww a baby Entremet Knife. WRONG. This is a BUTTER KNIFE. It is for spreading butter on your rolls.
This little guy is my favorite piece of silverware. Ever. He is for a coffee, hot tea and espresso. This piece is known as a DEMITASSE SPOON.

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