• Made in Kielder

customer voices

This is a write-up of one of my woodloving customers.

Review for my Camping Spatula, bowl and spoon. 2019. Ralf from 'Made in Kielder' has previously made me a camping bowl; modelled from a 16th Century design. This was back in the days when you brought your own bowl everywhere on the off chance you could grab a meal. Hard times! I digress, the bowl was made from birch and darkens with it's age and use. I love camping, ironically, running a campsite myself, ensures I never truly get the time to camp other than in the depths of winter when the site I manage is closed for the season. It's been a while before I could take my bespoke utensils out into the countryside and to test them with good prime camping tuck. So, finally, this February, I got the chance when two other 'eejits' went camping with me one wet and windy weekend in the Yorkshire dales. Previous experiences on other trips were fraught with metal plates or bowls rapidly cooling the food. It's a competition, once the food hits cold metal, tuck in like a pie eating champion; this ensures a warm meal. The slang term 'gobbling rods' fits the scene perfectly. So what is it about a wooden bowl? It keeps the heat for that bit longer, it's kinder to the food when it hits during cold spells and it 'feels' right. It's yours, it's personal. There were also a couple more modifications I needed from the ever patient Ralf. One request was: could he manufacture a "stout all purpose" spoon? One with a little more umph to it. [It's all in the engineering....y'know.] So I now have a camping spoon, a little thicker around the handle, ideal when cooking and for giving any sturdy stew a good stir for it's money. You don't tend to burn your mouth either. The second request was a little different, I required a small spatula. I needed a little change to an old design, could Ralf do it? The cogs whirred and after listening to what was required I received the perfect 'Camping Spatch.' The brief was: a small spatula, with an offset head. This offset would allow any camper to tend to any small pan or pot on the stove. Traditional spatula's, small or large were too cumbersome. It needed to be hard enough to give the pan a bit of a rough scraping when, not if, when your gourmet 'camp food' sticks to the bottom of the pan. So Ralf created, from a glorious ancient oak, my camping utensil. Bespoke, strong and treasured. And here it is: Camping Spatch in all his glory. [The coin wasn't included, it's just for scale] I used spatch to cook from my trusty pan, it went better than I ever thought. Fried eggs were just too easy, meat, was dealt with in a far more 'gentlemanly' manner than usual. [Which could, I will confess, end up with a long list of profanities, much scraping and on bad days total meal decapitation.] All of this was now a soon to be forgotten story. It served up said food perfectly too. Ralf, having listened to my endless demands, also made a couple of other implements, I have put them in the picture too. Chunky spoon is in my camping bowl. With camping spatch gracing trusty camping pan. A spoon and a domestic spatch, he has many others.....but these are mine! You will have to speak to Ralf to get your own. Website link below. Steve Webb Kielder.

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