I lust after Chinese porcelain. It's so seriously beautiful to me. Sometimes I dream about it. (I know, I know, I'm really weird!) Those beautiful, iconic, hand painted pieces of art that the Chinese use ever so casually as their dinnerware. Gold edged, milky white, delicately patterned or decorated with miniature hand-painted scenes of flying dragons or pagodas on lonely mountains, these gleaming smooth spoons, bowls and plates always grab me by the throat. I WANT THEM ALL! Alas for me (but luckily for my 老公!), my house is too small (but of course it is, I live in Hong Kong!) and my pocketbook too limited to buy all the beautiful chinese porcelain that I find. So most of the time I just stare at the porcelain loveliness and drool. However, we also like to poke around the old and second hand shops in Hong Kong and every once in a while we score some beautiful old porcelain ware, thrown out by their modern ex-owners (to be replaced by BPA infused designer plasticware). We, on the other hand, a family of luddites confessed, lovingly scoop home and squirrel away our treasures. Recently we discovered a stash of lovely old Chinese Porcelain Spoons or 中式湯匙...
We grabbed all these precious spoons because the flower design was quite unusual and also because these Chinese Porcelain Spoons were a baby size! You can see from the photo below that this spoon is half the size of the regular Chinese Porcelain Spoon. This size is really hard to find and perfect for little kids to use to drink soup, etc. One thing to beware of when using the Chinese Porcelain Spoon is, of course, how they will break if you drop them. Not a short drop, but if you drop it onto a hard floor surface, it will probably break. Ah, the cursed lot of Chinese Porcelain: beauty so ethereal . A product, perhaps, of the Chinese predilection for functionality, affordable prices and also their great love of decoration.
If you do have small children, you might consider getting Chinese spoons like these for drinking soup. (Only get the non colorful ones for actual use! The really colorful porcelain is actually only meant for decorative use.) I have found that it is much easier to drink soup from these Chinese Spoons. The first time in my life that I used a western soup spoon to drink soup (I was probably around 10 years old) I was surprised at how inefficiently it worked to bring the soup to my belly. (In other words I spilled soup all over my new dress.) Also your kid can rest the Chinese Porcelain Spoon on the table with soup in it! Just in case the kid needs a break while drinking soup!
The other Chinese Porcelain Spoon that we discovered had a very famous Communist Chinese propaganda slogan for the spoon decoration. It reads "为人民服务" or "In Service of the People". We have never, ever seen a Chinese spoon with communist propaganda slogan on it before! There's no stamp on the back indicating where or by whom it was made. We can only wonder as to why such a spoon would be made? To remind you of your communist obligations as you sipped hot soup perhaps?
Here is a Communist chinese poster with the same slogan. Notice the similarities in the rising sun motif.
And that's all for my lovely Chinese Porcelain Spoons. I hoped that you liked them! Trust me, there's really no better way to eat the delicious Chinese food that you make than on beautiful delicate Chinese porcelain! We also found some amazing chinese glassware from the seventies which I shall write about soon. Until then, happy porcelain treasure hunting to one and all!
More cool Chinese cookery stuff at The Hong Kong Cookery:
Classic Hong Kong Noodle Dishes - Tasty Food Toys