Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Solve the Mystery and Win!

This week's contest idea came from this.

I recently placed this item for sale in my etsy shop.  The problem is, I don't know what on earth it is.  My husband figured it was a burger press, since it is very heavy, but when I looked online at other burger presses, they looked nothing like this.  My friend Carol, who bought and sold antiques and 'treasures' (we don't call these things junk) for years, contacted me after seeing it in my shop.  I would expect her to know what it is but she had no idea.  So we remain stumped.

Lately, I have acquired several unusual and mysterious kitchen items like this one.  They all came in a large lot from the same estate.  This lady had every kitchen gadget known to man and a few unknown.

This week's contest is straightforward but not necessarily easy.  Take a real close look at our mystery object.  Examine it carefully.

Now, tell me what it is.  If you don't know what it is, make up something. 

The winner of this week's contest will be the person with the best story describing what they would use this item for.  It doesn't have to be right, although that would be great and would definitely get you brownie points, just be creative!  Next Tuesday, my esteemed panel of judges (consisting of my husband and three children), will choose their favorite story and the winner will receive...

the mystery utensil!

Just kidding.  The winner can choose any single item (including the mystery utensil) from my Housewares or Linens categories, valued $20 or less.

I have plenty of beautiful things to choose from and will be adding more all week.  Take a peek and see what you like or pick out something to give as a gift.  Remember, when you submit your entry below, make sure to leave your name or an email address so I can contact you if you win.

Good luck!
(Contest ends Monday at midnight PT)


  1. Carol Schmidt ( 30, 2010 at 10:34 AM

    I think it's to turn things over while in the oven.

  2. FYI for future reference, Cooks Illustrated has a monthly feature in the magazine where people send in photos of gadgets and they explain what the gadgest are. You can reach them at:

  3. So Tina, what's your guess? I know you could think of some creative use for this device!

  4. maybe for scooping the guts out of chicken or turkeys! HA!!!

  5. I think it is to be used to press down the pie dough in a pie pan. The handle would "crimp" the crust as you turned the pan. It could also be used to tamp down the dough in tart pans as long as they are round and not the fluted ones.

    After looking at a while, though I really think it is a tamp for espresso machines (pre the pre-packaged grounds).

  6. also, if it is "just" a metal such as alumnium it would make sense that it was for espresso. If it is older such as pewter, pies would make sense.

  7. joyce Kristensson

  8. Oh my gosh ... it's a hamburger presser! it has to be! Hahahaha!

  9. I actually think I have seen them in espresso shops. The hole in the handle allowed it to be tied to the apron.


  10. Flip the sucker over, screw it to a chair and you find the very perfect coffee cup holder stand thinger.

    Makes any chair a perfect chair.

    Hmmm...makes me want to drink a latte.

  11. I think its a country veterinarian's tongue depressor. You'd need weight to keep a cow's tongue down, and a string to pull it out if they decided to eat it.


  12. It is some kind of press and it's not that old - it looks like a commercial (restaurant) espresso tamper - as it looks relatively new, seems to be silver-plated (better for display purposes) and as you've said it's heavy.

    Initially I thought it was used to make sausage patties :-) but it looks too new for that.

    Fun blog - love your vintage items.

  13. Thanks to all who submitted your ideas. Don't know if we figured this out, but it was fun! Will let you know shortly who won.

  14. It's a dental tool for someone with a very large's that?