Wood Butter

I try and take good care of all my things.  Clothes, cars, cookware, whatever…if it belongs to me, it’s my responsibility to properly maintain it.  One glaring exception to this rule has been my wooden cooking utensils.

I’m one of those people who knows better but throws the wooden spatulas, spoons, and cutting boards into the dishwasher anyway.  I’m also one of those people who has some gnarly, dried out wooden spatulas, spoons, and cutting boards.

And then, thanks to a series of links I can no longer reconstruct, I landed over at 3191 Miles Apart‘s post about Wood Butter. Actually,  I landed on their post about Spoon Oil but I like the name Wood Butter better.  Within moments of reading the post, I was burning up Twitter, the Googley, and eBay trying to find a source of pure beeswax that could arrive via overnight express.  Because, dear friends, I was on a rescue mission.  I was determined to save my long neglected wooden utensils.

Thanks to eBay, PayPal, and the USPS, I was soon in possession of four ounces of sunshine.  That’s the only way I can describe the smell of pure beeswax.  Sweet and warm with just a hint of green.  Heady stuff to be sure.

Wax was melted, mineral oil was heated, and the two were introduced to the inside of a quart Ball jar.  After stirring and cooling, it was time to get down to business. I soon learned less is more when working with wood butter because a little goes a lot farther than I had expected.  Spoons, spatulas, and board received a Wood Butter massage and were set aside to rest and relax.  A day later, excess Wood Butter was buffed away with a clean dish towel and the utensils were put back in the drawer.

Now, when I open that drawer, I’m not greeted by the gnarly shrieks of dried out spoons and spatulas.  Instead, I could swear I hear contented sighs and get the faintest whiff of sunshine.

Want to experience the miraculous powers of Wood Butter?  You’re in luck.  Since my stash of Wood Butter far exceeds my wooden utensils inventory, I’m going to give some away.  To enter, leave a comment below confessing whether you too are guilty of crimes against your wooden utensils.  Entries must be received by midnight on April 30th.  The randomly selected winner will be announced on May 1st.

Want to make your own Wood Butter?  Keep reading.

Wood Butter

BAH Note:  If you have a great farmer’s market, check there for a source of local pure beeswax.  Since I did my searching in February, I had better luck over on eBay.  Mineral oil can be found at the drug store or supermarket near the laxatives.  If you want to scale down the size of your batch of Wood Butter, use a 4:1 ratio – four ounces of mineral oil to each ounce of beeswax.  My wax came in individual one ounce bars.  If yours is larger you may want to break it into smaller chunks.

  • 4 ounces pure beeswax
  • 16 ounces mineral oil

Bring a saucepan of water to a gentle boil.  Place your beeswax inside a one quart glass jar  and set the jar in the simmering water.  While the wax is melting, place the mineral oil inside another large glass jar.

Once all the wax has melted, carefully remove the jar from the saucepan and set it aside making sure to place a dish towel or pot holder under the bottom of the jar before setting it down.  Set the jar of mineral oil into the simmering water until it has warmed a bit.

Carefully remove the jar of mineral oil from the pan and pour the oil into the melted wax.  Stir with a wooden skewer until the two are thoroughly combined and allow to cool completely.  The final product will thicken and turn opaque.  Seal your jar tightly with a lid.

This Charming Candy – A Giveaway


image courtesy of this charming candy

When was the last time you had a lollipop?  Think about it.  When you’re a kid, people hand you lollipops left and right. You get them at the bank and the doctor’s office.  I even ran across something online recently where a dentist was giving out lollies to the kids.  I guess that’s one way to ensure job security.  But after you’re no longer cute by virtue of being young and precocious, the supply of lollies coming your way dries up.

My last real encounter with lollipops was in high school when the cheerleaders struck upon the idea of selling blowpops for a fundraiser.  It was genius really.  Those girls walked the halls with the bulk boxes of blowpops and we all flocked to them for the chance to exchange two quarters for a chunk of gum wrapped in a lollie shell.  I think they had the entire student body of Elkton High School hooked on their sugary stash.  But after that, lollipops and I pretty much went our separate ways.  I would occasionally score a DumDum on my way out of the vet but they were never as good as I remembered them being from my days as a young, precocious thing.  And then this summer the Universe took me to Seattle, home of This Charming Candy, and I rediscovered the joy of lollipops.

Run by Susan and Kate, This Charming Candy produces handmade lollipops.  Can you believe that?  Small batch, artisan lollipops.  Here’s what it says on their Etsy Profile Page, “Susan made her first lollipops as part of a science project, believe it or not. She loved watching the syrup boil, learning how to handle it, playing around with pretty food coloring and coming up with new ways to combine familiar flavors. She started bringing lollipops to gatherings with friends around New Years 2009. Soon she was totally hooked on making lollipops. All the positive reinforcement from her sugar-loving friends sure didn’t hurt either.

I am all for doing what you love.  I’m also all for things that taste good.  So having been tipped off about This Charming Candy before my trip to Seattle, I pestered Susan via email into meeting me and selling me some of her Salted Caramel lollie love.  She could not have been more gracious or generous with her time during my visit.  And  let me tell you, she totally delivered a sophisticated, adult lollipop that made me sing with delight.

The future may look back and dub Salted Caramel the sundried tomato of 2010 but I insist that it is timeless perfection.  Imagine salty and sweet happiness on a stick.  Despite such intriguing flavors as Birthday Cake, Teaberry, Nutmeg Creme, Maple Sugar, Blueberry Muffin, and a Twilight themed collection of Blood Sucker, Sweetheart, and Lickanthrope, I am steadfastly loyal to the Salted Caramel.

As we move into the gift giving season, I know some people for whom artisan lollipops would make the perfect holiday gift.  Maybe you do too?  And I imagine Santa wouldn’t mind finding a lollipop instead of cookies at your house as he burns the midnight oil on Christmas Eve.  Or maybe you want to treat yourself to a small indulgence.  Whatever the reason, This Charming Candy makes it easy for you to rediscover the love of lollipops.

I love the lollies that This Charming Candy produces and I believe in supporting people taking a chance on doing what they love, so I’m giving one Bon Appetit Hon reader the chance to discover This Charming Candy for free. No strings attached.  All you have to do is check out  This Charming Candy’s blog or Etsy shop for all the fantastic flavors Susan and Kate are offering up and leave me a comment saying which flavor you find most interesting.

Want an extra chance to win?  Then head on over to Twitter  and/or Facebook and post  the following:

Enter to win @charmingcandy handmade lollipops from @bonappetithon http://wp.me/pAING-Sh

Leave me a separate comment saying where you posted for each additional entry (one entry each for Twitter and Facebook for a maximum of two additional entries).

All comments must be received by midnight on Thursday, November 26th and the giveaway is open to residents of the US and Canada only.

The commenter randomly selected as the winner will receive $20 worth of shopping plus shipping in This Charming Candy’s Etsy shop.  You will be contacted by email if you are the winner so be sure to include your email address in the comment form (will not be published with your comments).

Now for the disclaimers:

This Charming Candy is a licensed food handler and processor in the state of Washington, and they make their candy in a licensed commercial catering kitchen. This kitchen processes foods to which some customers may be allergic, including milk, eggs, fish, crustacean shellfish, tree nuts, wheat, peanuts and soybeans.

This giveaway is being sponsored by me personally.  I have not received anything in consideration for this post. I just wanted to thank you with some lollie love for following my adventures here at BAH.

***Overlooked Disclaimer #1: I usually respond to every comment here at BAH but in order to keep things nice and tidy for the giveaway, I won’t be posting any responses. Feel free to chat with me about your lollie love on Twitter @bonappetithon  ****

These Are A Few Of My Favorite Things (A Giveaway)

My Favorite Things

**Be sure to read the entire post for details on the first BAH Giveaway!**

We all know about Fraulein Maria’s favorite things.  In case you need a refresher, the list includes:

  • Raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens
  • Bright copper kettles and warm woolen mittens
  • Brown paper packages tied up with string
  • Cream colored ponies and crisp apple strudels
  • Door bells and sleigh bells and schnitzel with noodles

A list of my favorite things isn’t nearly as lyrical…if only Rogers and Hammerstein has scored a musical about cooking then maybe there would be a show tune that includes: Continue reading “These Are A Few Of My Favorite Things (A Giveaway)”