A ladle (dipper) is a type of serving spoon used for soup, stew, or other foods. Although designs vary, a typical ladle has a long handle terminating in a deep bowl, frequently with the bowl oriented at an angle to the handle to facilitate lifting liquid out of a pot or other vessel and conveying it to a bowl. Some ladles involve a point on the side of the basin to allow for finer stream when pouring the liquid; however, this can create difficulty for left handed users, as it is easier to pour towards one's self. Thus, many of these ladles feature such pinches on both sides.
A spoon ladle is also known as a spoodle.
In modern times ladles are usually made of the same stainless steel alloys as other kitchen utensils; however, they can be made of aluminium, silver, plastics, melamine resin, wood, bamboo or other materials. Ladles are made in a variety of sizes depending upon use; for example, the smaller sizes of less than 5 inches in length are used for sauces or condiments, while extra large sizes of more than 15 inches in length are used for soup or punch.
- Swartz, Oretha D. (October 2, 1988). Service although not actually a spoon as is commonly found on a table, serving spoons are grouped under the 'utensil' umbrellaEtiquette (4th ed.). United States Naval Institute. p. 228. ISBN 978-0870216206.
- Von Drachenfels, Suzanne (November 9, 2000). The Art of the Table: A Complete Guide to Table Setting, Table Manners, and Tableware. Simon and Schuster. p. 213. ISBN 978-0684847320.
- "Dippers". Horniman Museum and Gardens. Retrieved 2015-07-20.
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