Here's the other side of that wicked wooden pasta paddle. (Thank you, Dr. Ken, for providing the perfect name.) As you can see (and click on the image to enlarge it if you can't) the other purpose of the holey horror is to measure uncooked spaghetti. That's why I chose this one. The other one didn't have the measurements printed on it.
Most of you came up with the correct answer. There are a lot of pasta lovers out there! Some of the other guesses were pretty creative:
- candle holder
- tool used to make butter or cheese
- bottom paddler
- male member measurer (!)
- wall decoration
Because I've always been a mouse lover, I want to share Mr. C's response with you.
This is a very close copy of the one found at Quidenham Monastery in Norfolk.This implement will be so useful in our kitchen. I usually grab a handful of spaghetti, think it doesn't look like enough, then toss in more. And more. Ron does the same when he cooks. We always end up with leftovers.
That one was fancier and gilded, but this looks a nice plain example.
This is indeed a pet mouse sizer. If the mouse can pass through the smallest hole then the naughty monk has been underfeeding his furry pet. On the other hand if the mouse cannot pass through the largest hole, it is mousy diet time. The other holes are simply to keep an eye on mouse girth gain, or MGG as it is known.
Ahhh, the joys of monastic mouse keeping.
Maybe we could start a new ritual for pasta night. I measure the spaghetti and put it in the pot. Then Ron spanks me with the wooden measurer until I think the spaghetti is done. He tosses a strand against the wall, and if it sticks, we eat. If it doesn't, I get paddled for an extra minute or two.
But what if we get carried away and the pasta ends up overcooked?