Tuesday, September 4, 2012

~The Art of Spooning & Porroning,Rated G~

Trust me this is not what it sounds like! This subject matter grew out of my ever growing curiosity about Spoons _a utensil we use on a daily basis without thought as to the origin.The idea on Porrons was a result of researching authentic traditions of Spain for my "Christmas in Spain Party 2012".So, now that we've gotten that out of the way,let's explore!

When I started my tea business in 1994_("Let's Talk Tea")_naturally I collected many accoutrements for use in show and tell at my Tea Lectures.This photo shows only a few_some are very hard to find items.
LtoR_Sterling Silver Mote Spoon, 19th c.Helmet Infuser,sugar tongs,Bamboo tea scoop & Ironstone Strainer & Basket....w/my line of Tea_"Texas Breakfast".

Top_Japanese Water Dipper,wooden spoon,Green Tea Powder Spoon & Bamboo Whisk.

Add to that another collection which includes:

Top: Toledo Olive Sword Picks,(1st row):Absinthe Spoon,Yerba Mate Bombilla,Nut Spoons,Demitasse Spoons.(2nd row):Honey Bomb,Honey Spoon,Grapefruit Spoon,Old Silver (18th c.) and a spoon my husband unearthed here on the Farm.

L to R: Mini-Ironstone Ladle (Soup)& Czech Ladle(Soup) Bowls,Mexican Molinillo and Stainless Chicken Measuring Spoons.

 L to R:Vintage 50's West Bend Aluminum Tallstirs(used w/Tumblers),Sterling Silver Japanese Ice Tea Stirrers and Chopsticks.

I realized that utensils have played a large part in the history of humans moving away from fingers to a little help in getting the food down!Although,there are some cultures that still display a large portion of food on a table or whatever is handy_everyone cups their fingers and dig in...guess I'd really lose weight in those cultures! No Can Do!

Some form of utensils has been around for at least 5,000 years_i.e Chopsticks! Ancient Egyptains fashioned spoons from ivory,flint,slate & wood,Greeks,Romans used bronze and silver,Medieval Spoons were made of cow horns,wood,brass or pewter,English(dated to first mention in 1259)_made of gold and silver.

In the wardrobe accounts of Edward I for the year 1300 some gold and silver spoons marked with the fleur-de-lis,the Paris mark, are mentioned.One of the most interesting medieval spoons is the coronation spoon used in the anointing of the English sovereign. The term_"Born with a Silver Spoon in his mouth"!_describes an individual who is born into a life of wealth and ease, and is perceived to not have to work for anything.
Here's a few examples of other spoons:
Lovespoon_a wooden spoon, often with double bowl, formerly carved by a Welsh suitor as a gift of betrothal for his promised bride.
     Spoons from Pompeii,Naples Nat'l Archaeological Museum

Salt Spoon and Salt Cellar_used from Middle Ages to WW II

Splayds_an eating utensil combining the functions of spoon,fork,and knife.Created by William McArthur in the 1940s in Sydney,Australia.

Types of Spoons include eating,cooking and serving.To date there are 23 eating spoons (a Marrow Spoon to remove marrow from bones,WT????)_21 Cooking and Serving spoons(a Bonbon Spoon)_ and 10 listed as Ceremonial or Commemorative for functions other than ingesting comestibles(like an Ear Spoon!!!).

I had no idea what this object was when purchased at an Antique store many years ago!Finally! It is a Mexican Molinillo Spoon/Stirrer used to make Hot Chocolate! Makes sense,the Ancient Aztec of Central Mexico were known for chocolate making skills_adding a pinch of chili as they did_kicks it up a notch! YUM.
         Mexican Molinillo Stirrer

Check out this video on Making Chocolate:

I've always known about Yerba Mate_The National Drink of Argentina. So,I was really happy to find this Sterling Silver Bombilla on EBay:

How to make Yerba Mate:

Here again_Everyone drinks from the same STRAW,NOT!

Bottomline_there's a lot of Spooning going on here_ and this kind of Spooning is pretty Nice as well!

I'm preparing for the fun we shall have at the "Spain Christmas Party 2012".We will be "porroning"!These new found vessel shall take us there...should be over the top hilarious...I know my friends!!!
These are two Vintage Porrons found on EBay & Etsy's...nice! We will fill them with Wine from Spain...Let the fun begin!

A porró, porrón, or porron is a traditional glass wine pitcher,typical of many regions of Spain like Catalonia and Aragón. It resembles a cross between a wine bottle and a watering can. The top of the bottle is narrow and can be sealed off with a cork. Stemming upwards from the bottom of the pitcher is a spout that gradually tapers off to a small opening. It is shaped such that the wine stored inside it will have minimal contact with the air, while being ready to be used at all times. The idea originated as a replacement to bota bags.

To drink from a porron, a beginner starts by bringing the spout very close to his mouth and tilts it forward slowly so the beak points towards the teeth. Once the liquid starts coming out, the porró is pulled away from the face while the drinker looks up. To finish drinking, a beginner lowers the porró and brings it back down and closer to the mouth again before stopping, quickly tilting the spout up at the last moment so there is no spillage.Everyone drinks AGAIN from the same bottle!

Now here's what it looks like:
...that's called Normal_here's a look at "Extreme Porroning"...toooo funny!
Crazy Guys,Indeed!

So,whether "Spooning or Porroning"_in the words of Marvin Gaye_

                   "Let's Get It On"
See,I told you it was rated "G"....~The Sage Book Whisperer!

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