What’s it called? Cutlery, Flatware, Utensils, Tableware, Silverware?

cutlerySo what do you call those tools that you use to prepare and put food in your mouth? I am speaking specifically of the fork, knife and spoon. Cutlery, flatware, utensils, tableware, silverware or what? Let’s look at some definitions:

Cutlery – 1. cutting instruments collectively, especially knives for cutting food. 2. utensils, as knives, forks, and spoons, used at the table for serving and eating food.

Utensils – 1. any of the instruments or vessels commonly used in a kitchen. 2.

any instrument, vessel, or tool serving a useful purpose.

Flatware – 1. utensils, as knives, forks, and spoons, used at the table for serving and eating food. 2. dishes or containers for the table that are more or less flat, as plates and saucers.

Tableware – the dishes, utensils, etc., used at the table.
Silverware – articles, especially eating and serving utensils, made of silver, silver-plated metals, stainless steel, etc.
After reading these definitions my vote is for cutlery as the others are either too vague or too inclusive. But here’s the rub, the Internet on the whole believes that cutlery is all about knives. If you look at the image with this article, you can probably understand why. And this isn’t a regional issue from what I can tell, we all have the same issue. It seems everyone only sees the word “cut” in cutlery.

Cake and Pie serving cutlery – For Christmas

cake serverCreating the perfect pie is an art. I spent a few days in training with a Master Baker from the CIA (Culinary Institute of America) and as a result I really have learned to appreciate what it takes to make a perfect crust. I can’t make a pie, what did you expect I only had a few days.

When you ask someone to describe “pie shaped” they usually describe a perfect triangle with a curved side. Not a crumbled mess on a plate. Trying to serve pie or cake for that matter without the proper tools results in the destruction of your hard work.

This 2-piece cake and pie serving set from Towle is themed for the Christmas holiday. It has a cake knife that is topped with a candy cane and a server with a snowman. Make sure to hand wash to avoid corrosion or losing the silver alloy plating. And don’t let your pie be destroyed by trying to use a fork and knife made for carving the turkey!

 Towle Holiday Wishes Candy Cane Knife and Snowman Trowel

Rada Cutlery – Starter Knife Gift Set

rada cutleryWe’ve been given this set as a gift, twice. So that must mean something. And I’ve noticed these pieces in many a drawer and dishwasher. Which brings me to my first point about this start cutlery set by Rada: Don’t put in the dishwasher! The steel for the blades are wonderfully super sharp, hold an edge, and quite flexible. But the silver brushed handles are made of aluminum (which makes a nice non-slip grip) and that aluminum will tarnish and pit if you put it in the dishwasher.

The set contains a regular paring knife, vegetable peeler, tomato slicer, long parer, 6″ bread knife, cook’s knife, and a slicer. It does make a great gift for the student or someone who never has a decent knife in the house when you visit.

 Rada Cutlery S38 The Starter Knife Gift Set