Maintenance of wooden eating utensils

With proper use of your wooden spoon or bowl, it can last a long time. It can then even be passed on from generation to generation. Besides that, it will over time obtain a patina that provides an increasingly beautiful and more authentic look. Good maintenance of your eating utensils is important though.

keeping your spoons dry
keeping your spoons dry

Discolouration

Not only by general use, but also by strongly staining foods, your spoon or bowl will discolour. In the beginning this can be a bit of a shock. That lovely curry did just turn your new spoon into a yellow spotted spoon … The discolouration caused by this staining food will, however, fade over time and the spoon will eventually get a nice, even, specific discolouration. This is the evidence that your spoon is well used and is continuing to write its own history, which had started with a freshly fallen seed from the tree of which it was made ….

Cleaning

Never clean wooden products in a dishwasher. This can cause cracks in the wood and make odours from the detergent get into the wood. So wash it by hand, optionally with a drop of mild soap.

The soaking of spoons causes them to absorb a lot of water and thus expand. They shrink again during drying. In extreme cases, this can cause cracks in the wood. It is therefore best to rinse the spoons directly after use, so that it is not necessary to soak them. Make sure that the spoon or bowl does not remain in a layer of water after doing the dishes. Allow the product to air dry further. This prevents discoloration and unpleasant odors.

Oil (optional)

When you buy wooden cutlery at Het Noeste Leven, it is generally treated with flaxseed oil. This gives a nice, intense colour to the wood, but is not necessary. Over time, the colour that the oil has created will fade and the product may become paler. This does not affect the quality of the product. If you want to get the clear colour back, you can re-oil the spoon.

Both raw flax oil and walnut oil are suitable for this. These types of oil harden after some time. Think about the old artists and painters for example who use flaxseed oil for their paint. Keep in mind any nut allergies. In that case it is best to use flax oil. Other edible oils, such as sunflower or olive oil, are not suitable. These do not harden and become rancid, which gives the spoon an unpleasant odour that can not or only hardly be removed. Boiled linseed oil, which is used for example for furniture, is also not suitable in connection with the toxic components added to speed up the drying process.

oil on cloth
Put some oil on a piece of cloth
oiled spoon
Let the oil absorb

To re-oil the eating utensils, put a little flaxseed or walnut oil on a cloth and rub the oil onto the product. Let it rest for a while. If all the oil is absorbed by the wood, you can repeat the process again, until the oil does not fully absorb. Then wipe off the remaining oil with a clean, dry cloth and allow the product to air dry.

Spoon right after production
Spoon right after production
After using for several months
After using for several months
After re-oiling
After a new layer of oil

The hardening of the oil is very slow. It is best not to use the product for at least a month after oiling. A good time for oiling is right before you go on a holiday. Unless you take along your spoons and bowls of course ….