food turner– n. cooking utensil having a flat flexible part and a long handle; used for turning or serving food.
spatula – n. a utensil with a broad, flat often flexible blade, used for lifting, spreading or stirring foods.
Ok. Got it. Are we good? Do you understand the difference? Based on these standard dictionary definitions… me neither.
It’s funny because growing up, a spatula was the thing that my Mom used to flip pancakes, cook eggs and everything else that involved a fry pan. The wood utensil with the flexible plastic on the end used to scrape batter out a bowl? I don’t think we even had a name for that. So, that was the info I had going in to the wonderful world of kitchenware buying. Wrong. Wrong. Wrong.
Here’s the run down on turners
- The Basics: Turners are typically made from nylon, silicone or stainless steel. Nylon is the cheapest option and the most brittle of materials. You can find nylon turners for @$1. Silicone is a wonderful option, it is incredibly heat-resistant and safe for nonstick cookware. Stainless turners should never be used on nonstick cookware but I love mine for getting the perfect lasagna squares out of my glass bakeware.
- Types: Solid turners (great for all types of cooking), slotted turners (great for greasier foods such as hamburgers. When you pick them up with the slotted turner, most of the grease drains through the slots and remains in the pan), fish turners (longer more narrow turner head to pick up larger pieces of delicate fish and drains the oil thru the slots as well) and pancake turners (wider head to pick up more of the pancake and minimize flipping mistakes).
- My recommendations: Personally, I love the Kitchenaid turner line (prices range from $5.99-$9.99 at Target, Bed Bath and Beyond, Sears, Kohls and Amazon to name a few) and the Kenmore stainless-silicone line exclusive to Kmart (prices range from $8.99-$9.99). Color and design preferences play a big part in selecting a tool line. People typically gravitate to the color and design of a particular brand and stick with it for all of their kitchen tools.
Okay. Okay. I admit it. I made the title sound wayyy more exciting than this blog ended up being but they can’t ALL be the best blog ever, right? Happy flipping everyone!