What It Is, or How Simon Discredited My Mother.

I’m a little afraid to post this. My mom might get mad. More than anything, I can’t stand it when my mom is mad at me. No wait, I can’t stand it when she’s disappointed in me more. But mad isn’t good either.

I was seeking the appropriate link to serve as proof of the proper name of the Mystery Utensil when Simon’s comment came through about it being a butter pick. And I was like, yeah, it could be a butter pick. And then I couldn’t find a link to prove what my mom told me it was.

But I totally found a link that says it’s a butter pick. Check it out.

Mom told me it was a pickle server.

Maybe I heard it wrong. Maybe it’s my fault. “Pick” and “pickle” are so very close. Or it could be an intergenerational game of telephone; I believe this was my great-grandma’s. Perhaps through the generations “butter pick” morphed into “pickle server”.

Or, maybe it’s multi-functional. Because I found this link to a very similar item that, while different, is quite clearly labeled as a pickle spear.

While I am convinced that it would work quite nicely as a butter pick, it also is perfect to spear pickles:

Which is how I used it on Memorial Day. Which made me happy. So there.

Meanwhile, I discovered that it is possible to get many other nifty utensils in my silver pattern, including a bacon fork.

Simon, if my mom yells at me, I’m sending her your way.

25 thoughts on “What It Is, or How Simon Discredited My Mother.

  1. After checking out both links, I agree it is definitely a butter pick – and a very pretty one at that!
    Hope you don’t get yelled at by your mom!

  2. It may be a butter pick, but wth is a butter pick used for? Your mom shouldn’t be mad. She should be proud of herself for finding something practical to do with the thing. A butter pick? It definitely makes more sense as a pickle server.

    The bacon fork is equally perplexing. Who comes up with this stuff? It’s a very pretty silver pattern, though.

    1. I like it better when you think of it as a bacon ladle, and use it flat to lift a strip of bacon onto your plate. I think I need one. I agree, I think that having both butter picks and butter knives is a bit redundant. They had specific utensils for sardines, shellfish, and lemons, to name a few. I like the pattern too- I am not sure who chose it originally. A few grandmas ago 🙂

  3. Maybe it’s because my family comes from poor sharecropping roots, but we never had such finery as china, not even the typical stuff like plates and spoons. Naturally, something like the butter pick / pickle spear were (as the guys from Monty Python put it) “right out.” It’s amazing what people can make, why they make it, and what it’s used for. 🙂 I could use that thing to clean the gunk out of my French horn valves!

  4. Now that martinis are involved, I feel the need to jump in… I thought that’s what toothpicks are for. I was just worrying last night about what it says about me that I use the majority of my toothpicks as martini olive spears. Have I been doing it wrong? Do I need a doohickey like yours? Meanwhile, I remember very clearly a family discussion vis-a-vis the function of a particular stunted, curiously-pronged fork at a Thanksgiving dinner a few years ago. We were told it was a pickle fork, but not knowing the name of my late grandmother’s silver pattern, I can’t find evidence of it.

    1. I am going to say without a doubt that the stunted, curiously-pronged fork is a pickle fork. I’m also going to say that you need one of these… thingies for your martinis. Think of it as a high class toothpick. I’m not sure what other people use toothpicks for, BTW, besides for their martini olives.

  5. I prefer to believe it has to do with pickles because I have a pickle obsession that rivals Snookie’s. Although, I just shove my hand in the jar. I’m classy like that.

    1. The fact that your hand fits in the jar tells me that you do in fact have such a pickle obsession, or else you have freakishly small hands. No teeny tiny pickle jars for you!

  6. Is it the edge that really determines the difference between pickle and butter. From the photos i can’t tell if it’s a thin blade like device for “spearing” or a flat somewhat dull but tapered device for “picking.” My bet is that pickle for could pick butter no problem, but a butter pick would do a poor job spearing pickles. As your above photo shows… Pickle is speared.

  7. Many, many years ago, my husband was invited to dinner by a couple who were somewhat older and definitely more affluent than he. While looking for sugar for his coffee, he spotted a low open dish filled with white crystals accompanied by a tiny spoon, which he then sprinkled liberally into his cup. He almost spit his coffee out all over the lovely linen tablecloth. The item he had mistaken for a small sugar bowl was actually a salt cellar. Here is a link to many photos of salt cellars.

    1. Oh, his poor coffee! I can’t tell you how much I love these salt cellars. I have a large wooden one that we use in the kitchen but I don’t have any schmancy ones to use with the teeny spoons, of which we have three, for some reason.

Comment. It gives me a reason not to clean my house.

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