The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Spoon scale

Rosalie's picture
Rosalie

Spoon scale

I've just become aware of an item called a Spoon Scale from Pro-Idee in the UK.  Check it out at

Pro-Idee

It's a spoon that weighs.  Any thoughts?  I think the US price is about $36.

Rosalie

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

Mini O

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

for Euro 20.  Great little toy!  Turn it on and set it flat on a surface... until it reads 0.0  has all kinds of little adjustments for the engineer types, yet simple to operater, turn it on and measure. 


When comparing a pocket scale to a spoon scale think of what you measure most, I measure dry but I also measure oil and extracts making a flat pocket scale with it's flat tiny tray awkward.  The spoon is removable and dishwasher safe.  It comes in assorted colors and transparences.  I went with a transparent bowl and SS/black handle.  My husband finds it very cool!  I find it not only space saving but dual purpose, I can easily convert volume recipes with teaspoons & tablespoons and mark down amounts. 


Want half a teaspoon? fill it to one teaspoon mark, note the weight and pour out until you have half the weight.


The pivot it inside the handle as the spoon bowl is held into the air on two prongs.

Darkstar's picture
Darkstar

I have one thought about that.......and it has to do with the 1970's/80's and Disco.

 

*SHUDDER*

dougal's picture
dougal

I suspect this product was conceived by a stylist rather than an engineer.

 

My concern is that there is going to have to be a pivot of some sort between the bowl and handle.

Unfortunately, any restriction whatever to completely free movement of the hinge/pivot is going to give an inaccuracy in the weighing. And any flour, dust or muck is going to find its way into the hinge... Secondly, the load cell is almost guaranteed to experience severe overloads routinely - just think of the force required to extract a spoon from honey or peanut butter compared to the weight of product in the spoon. 

 

While I can see the appeal of such a product, I do have considerable scepicism that such a design would work accurately (for long) in a real kitchen/bakery - particularly for small loads after 'varied' usage. 

Digital scales are really cheap, including "pocket scales" that can weigh small quantities phenominally accurately - even if their display backlights may have the function of making them more readable in dark alleyways... Check eBay! Presumably because many of these scales might be employed in transactions involving very expensive substances, many of the designs even have calibration functions for guaranteed accuracy...

Rosalie's picture
Rosalie

Dougal, I see no evidence of a pivot.  I doubt there is any.  It looks to me like a great way to weigh minute amounts of salt and yeast.

Rosalie

holds99's picture
holds99

Thanks for the post.  It seems a little expensive but most of us love kitchen gadgets so if cost is no object it might be worth a try. 

Howard - St. Augustine, FL

Rosalie's picture
Rosalie

Howard, this sounds just like your bag.  If you try it and like it, maybe I'll try it too.

One potential problem is that it's overseas.

Rosalie

holds99's picture
holds99

Rosalie,

If I bought one of those mini salt scales I would have to keep it in the safe slong with my sterling silver truffle slicer and gold sommelier cup :-) 

It does sound kind of nifty but with shipping, duty, etc. it probably doesn't make sense.  In the meantime I'll wait and watch for them to go on sale at either Williams Sonoma or Harry Winston Jewelers (where they bring the merchandise out on blue velvet trays for viewing and examination).  If you get one before I do let me know how and if it works.  In the meantime guess I'll keep using my trusted metal measuring spoons.

Howard - St. Augustine, FL

bjames's picture
bjames

All of my recipes are written in cup measurements. When baking, precision is very important, and I just purchased a digital kitchen scale. My query is about the differences I have found in the conversion charts from cups to grams. I have found that different charts vary with 1 cup of all purpose U.S. flour = from 110 grams to 120 grams! Why the differences and where is the PRECISION of measuring? Which weight is the accurate one, and which amount should I go with to convert my recipes from measuring to weighing?

dougal's picture
dougal

Its the weight that matters.

You have to be precise about the amount of flour you add (its weight). However, in a "cup", depending on your technique, you will have a variable amount of air - and hence a variable quantity (weight) of flour.

 

Any conversion table is imprecise - the factor depends on the measuring technique and the particular flour.

Hence any recipe quoting "cup" quantities is being imprecise.

 

You should be able to improve the *consistency* from bake to bake by weighing a converted quantity.

But don't think you are following the "cup" recipe more *precisely* by weighing a converted quantity. The recipe and the conversion are inherently imprecise.

Better-written recipes (ie those communicating more accurately) give quantities by weight.  

Yumarama's picture
Yumarama

I've seen 150g = cup.

According to Nutrition Info label on my bags of flour, and one presumes a national flour manufacturer will know this, 1/4 cup serving = 30g, meaning a full cup = 120g. I've looked at the four different brands of flour I have and all say the same thing. So a cup of flour according to the flour industry is 120g. So check your flour bag and see if it gives you a weight equivalent in the Nutrition breakdown label.

Where's the precision indeed? Just because officially a cup of flour is 120g does not mean the person who put the recipe you're reading together was precise in their own measurements. If it says "2 cups" you have to just assume and hope they really meant 240g of flour. Check the recipe book if that's your source, they'll hopefully mention somewhere in there what they mean by "a cup". If they don't or if you're getting the recipe on it's own from a friend or off the net, you can only take a good guess, cross your fingers and hope 120g will be close enough to what the author themselves used.

To add to the confusion, "a cup" is not a standard measure worldwide. In North America, a cup holds 236.6 ml of water OR 240 (FDA version) so even in the US, there are two different "standards". In the UK, it's 285ml and Australia is 250ml. Therefore a British recipe will not be the same as a US recipe by nearly 1/4c, if it's given in cups. However, a gram is a gram is a gram so if an amount is given in weights - and grams are much more precise and much easier to work with than fractions of ounces - there's little chance of confusion no matter where you are.

Then of course you have to also figure out what a teaspoon of salt or a tablespoon of butter weighs...

--------
Paul

Eli's picture
Eli

Having just started my baking and still working on my skills  I admit the scales are the way to go. I purchased some two months ago and they are invaluable. I had the same problem with what weighed what and how to start. My cups of flour are the 150 gram cups. They are the volume measurements I have and have been using for what I thought was a "cup". I couldn't determine what I should use so I had to make some trial runs and using the "cup" I made a few loaves. If it called for 5 cups of flour, I measured then weighed 5 "cups" if the dough seemed a little dry then I knew I needed to cut back on the flour becuase the "cup" was off. I think the average cup is between around 120 but I can measure my Hi Gluten Flour and it is closer to 150. You have to get a feel for the flour.

Sorry, this is so long and hope it helped.

 

holds99's picture
holds99

I use 125 g of white A.P. or bread flour for a cup.  I find that if it's a bit too wet after mixing it's easier adding small amounts of flour (1 tsp. at a time) to firm it up a bit rather than  trying to incorporate more water at the end of the mixing process, when it's too firm.

Howard - St. Augustine, FL