These are a Few of My Favorite Things

These are a Few of My Favorite Things
These are a Few of My Favorite Things

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Rolling Pins

You will find a rolling pin in almost every kitchen, regardless of the age of the homeowner.  In fact, they are a very popular collectible and readily available at flea markets, antique shops and primitive shops.  They are somewhat difficult to display but we think we have the perfect solution.  The rolling pin rack in the top picture is handmade for us by a local craftsperson and will be for sale in our Persnickety Primitives shop.  You will also be able to order it finished in a custom color of your choice.  This one is more of a wood tone and we also will have one in the shop that is finished in distressed black.  Let's look at a little of the history of rolling pins.
Of course, a rolling pin is a cylindrical food preparation utensil used to shape and flatten dough.  Two styles of rolling pins are found; roller and rod.  Roller types consist of a thick cylindrical roller with small handles at each end; rod type rolling pins are usually thin tapered batons.  Rolling pins of different styles and materials offer advantages over another, as they are used for different tasks in cooking and baking.
ROD:  Thin rods typically made of wood around 2-3 cm in diameter.  They are used by rolling the rod across the dough using one's palm.  The pins may be tapered at one or both ends for more pivot control in certain tasks such as making small pie shells.  Most East Asian or French style rolling pins, and the Turkish Oklava are rod style.  Although I collect old rolling pins, I usually use a wooden french rod style made by Paula Deen (available at Walmart) for my every day use.
ROLLER:  Consists of a thick heavy roller made of a variety of materials around 7-10 cm in diameter with thinner handles which extend through the roller.  They are used by grasping the handles and pushing the pin across the dough.  Many Western rolling pins are roller types.  These are the most common collectible.
Rolling pins come in a variety of sizes and shapes and materials including glass, (ceramic), Acrylic, Bakelite, Copper, Brass, Aluminum, Silicone, wood, stainless steel, marble, and plastic. Some are hollow and are able to be filled with cold or warm water to better roll a desired food.  Marble rolling pins are often cooled in a refrigerator for maintaining a cold dough while making puff pastry.
In the top picture, you will notice on the very bottom of the rack, there is a very small rolling pin.  My dad brought this home to me when I was about ten years old.  A friend of his had whittled  it for me.  That little rolling pin has flattened many mounds of play dough when I was a child.  It is a sentimental keepsake in my collection.  We will have several old examples of rolling pins available for sale in the Persnickety Primitives shop.  My favorite collectible rolling pins are the older one piece ones.  They do not have the rod running through the pin, but instead are carved entirely in one piece.  Examples of these are shown in the bottom picture.  Whether you are an avid rolling pin collector and just need a way to display them, we have your solution.  Or, if you are a beginning rolling pin collector, you can add to your collection from the treasured finds available in the shop.

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