I love ice cream and I love butter, but what I don’t love is having to wait for them to soften and melt so that I can scoop and spread them. Is there a solution other than just waiting? Maybe… The self-warming ScoopTHAT and SpreadTHAT ice scream scoop and butter knife claim to solve these issues. I’ve been testing samples of each. Let’s see if their claims are true.
Note: Images can be clicked to view a larger size.
ScoopThat! ice cream scoop
First up is the ScoopThat! ice cream scoop. At first glance it is a really nice scoop with a comfortable non-slip handle and large Teflon coated scoop.
Look closely at the handle in the image above, see the bubbles? The handle, which they call the energy reservoir, is a plastic cylinder which is full of liquid. It’s designed to absorb the cold from the ice cream scoop allowing the special cutting edge to easily scoop perfect frozen ice cream scoops right out of the freezer without the aid of electricity or moving parts. At least that’s the claim.
Unfortunately, in real life the experience was disappointing. I bought a brand new quart of vanilla ice cream just for the review (yeah I know, I have a tough job!). I placed the ice cream in the freezer and didn’t touch it until a day or so later, so it was definitely frozen solid. When it came time for the test, I removed the lid from the ice cream and tried to scoop it with the ScoopThat! scoop. As you can see from the image above, my scoop yielded more like half a scoop. It wasn’t any easier than a traditional ice cream scoop or just using a large metal spoon like I usually do. I thought I was probably doing something wrong, so I retrieved the packaging to look at the instructions. There were none. I looked up the product on the manufacture’s site, no instructions there either. I looked for tips on the retailer’s site who sent the sample. Strike three. So I tried experimenting by running the handle under hot water and then trying to carve out a scoop. Same results. I then turned the ice cream and ScoopThat! over to Jeanne to give it a try. Again, same results, always half scoops, never the promised perfect scoops. Even scooping the half scoops wasn’t any easier to do.
I’ll probably continue to use this ice cream scoop only because it’s well made and I don’t already have an ice cream scoop. I won’t except it to scoop any faster than a normal scoop though.
Verdict: nice idea but it doesn’t work as advertised…
SpreadThat! butter knife
I had bigger hopes for this one as we use more butter than ice cream in our house. Typically Jeanne calls me before leaving work to remind me to set out the butter so it will be softened by the time she gets home for dinner. When I forget or ignore that request, I usually get the evil eye. I didn’t want anymore evil eyes, so I was looking forward to the SpreadThat! solving that problem.
At first glance, the SpreadThat! looks more like a Titanium tongue depressor than a butter knife. It’s a hefty oblong bar of metal with a non-toxic Titanium coating. The knife is designed to transfer heat from the palm of your hand to the blade of the knife. All without electricity.
The SpreadThat! doesn’t have a sharp blade, it has a modestly thin edge on one side that is the designated cutting edge. The other side is wider and more blunt, so you need to pay attention to how you hold it since it isn’t real obvious which side is which without actually looking at it closely.
We use real butter in my house, no fake margarine junk, so the test was with a brand new stick of butter that had been placed in a glass butter dish in the fridge for a day or so. I removed the lid, placed the cutting edge of the SpreadThat! knife on the butter, pressed down and TWACK! You know that sound when the knife slides off the cold butter and hits the dish. Ok, I thought, maybe I tried cutting too thick of a slice, so I tried again. Not much better. Hmmmm… Then I rubbed my hand on my pants leg to warm it up, grabbed the knife again, held it in my hand for 20 seconds to transfer the heat and tried it again. Same result. Next I ran the knife under hot water for about 20 seconds, dried it off and tried again. Same results. None of my tests had results that were any better than a normal run-of-the-mill butter knife. Bummer.
Verdict: nice idea but it doesn’t work…
At this point I realize that just leaving the ice cream or butter out for 15-30 minutes before using is the easiest and cheapest way to go.
Source: The samples for this review were provided by Useful Things. Visit their site for more info.