Fish slice (kitchen utensil)

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A modern fish slice

In British English, a fish slice is a kitchen tool with a wide flat blade with long holes in it, used for lifting and turning food while cooking.[1] In American English, this is known as spatula.

It was originally a serving implement for fish, usually made of silver, antique examples of which commonly appear at auction.[2] Fish slices were made of silver or Sheffield plate rather than steel to avoid the possibility of tainting the taste of the fish due to a reaction between the fish and its lemon seasoning and the steel. After 1745, their outlines were usually fish shaped.[3]

The term now refers to an implement used for turning fish and other foods when frying them, available in many materials such as stainless steel. In the US a fish slice is regarded as a type of spatula and may be called a turner.

The Victoria and Albert Museum has an extensive collection of metalwork fish slices from Britain and the U.S.A. and includes both contemporary and historical pieces. Manufacturers include functional items, for example some from Josiah Wedgwood[4] to more sculptural contemporary works by Ane Christensen[5].

In Whose Line is it Anyway, during the song styles segment, Josie Lawrence sang both a hymn[6] and a ballad[7] about a fish slice.


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  2. ^ English, Irish, & Scottish Silver (Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute, Beth Carver Wees: Hudson Hills, 1997 ISBN 978-1-55595-117-7, at p. 257, §174)
  3. ^[permanent dead link]
  4. ^ "Fish slice | Josiah Wedgwood's factory | V&A Search the Collections". V and A Collections. 2020-02-07. Retrieved 2020-02-07.
  5. ^ "Fish slice | Christensen, Ane | V&A Search the Collections". V and A Collections. 2020-02-07. Retrieved 2020-02-07.
  6. ^ Song Styles (fish slice hymn) - Whose Line UK, retrieved 2020-02-08
  7. ^ Song Styles (fish slice) - Whose Line UK, retrieved 2020-02-08