Butter Paddle

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A short, flat wooden utensil that was most often used in kitchens when making and processing butter or commonly used during pasta making. The Butter Paddle, which is also known as Butter Hand or Scotch Hand, is a tool that was used as butter was churned, pressing the butter against the side of the butter tub so that any excess buttermilk liquid forming in the fat pockets of the butter, would be forced out to stiffen the consistency of the butter. This kitchen utensil is also used by bakers to form ridges or decorative patterns on various foods. Butter was formed into decorative round shapes with ridges by rolling and forming a ball with the paddle. When making pasta, the paddle was used to form ridges in pasta, such as for garganelli pasta or to help form the delicate balls for gnocchi, a dumpling common in Italy. For garganelli, the pasta dough is placed as a square of pasta, onto the butter paddle and with the use of a dowel, the pasta square is rolled up across the paddle forming ridges as it is rolled. Similarly, when making gnochi, the dough is rolled into strands that are cut in small pieces and rolled into small round dumplings with the use of the paddle. The ridges that form on the dough help to retain the pasta sauce when it is served over the pasta.

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