These vintage Thai enamel spoons form a colorful tableau in the hues of the Thai flag – red, white and blue.
Today you’ll see their plain, ugly step cousins at cheap noodle stands all over the country. Those simple stainless steel spoons – in naked silver – sport the same design. And they certainly do the trick for a casual meal at home or on the street. But what they achieve in function, they lack in style.
Enamelled in red, white, blue or green, these flamboyant spoons were all the rage until a few decades ago. In those retro days, the spoons were equal opportunity. They scooped up rice just as soon as they’d dip into a soup bowl. Now, rice is the domain of the flat Western-style spoons and forks. Usurpers!
Enamel spoons, such as the ones shown here, fed bellies from Thailand to as far south as Malaysia and Singapore, but these in the photo are patriotically Thai.