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An Offset Spatula Is The One Baking Tool You Should Always Have On Hand

offset spatula
offset spatula - yartthedesigner/Shutterstock

It's safe to say that there is an overabundance of kitchen tools that exist in the world, and many of them are unnecessary at best and gimmicky and useless at worst. Whether it's a banana slicer (what about that lonely chef's knife in the drawer?) or a bread maker (you've got an oven, don't you?), there are many appliances that simply take up space in the kitchen. But then there are some kitchen tools that should be as essential as your favorite chef's knife. One of those is an offset spatula.

An offset spatula is a small and unassuming kitchen utensil that is useful for numerous tasks in the kitchen. Typically, it's a narrow metal spatula that looks not unlike a perfectly shaped ladyfinger cookie, attached to a wooden or plastic handle. Like many other metal spatulas, it has a nearly 90-degree bend just past the handle. They can come in different lengths and sizes, but the shape is always narrower than a regular spatula.

Read more: 10 Kitchen Tools You Should Be Using Differently

Useful Ways To Employ Your Offset Spatula In The Kitchen

icing cake with offset spatula
icing cake with offset spatula - Srdjanpav/Getty Images

Offsets are most commonly used by bakers and pastry chefs. Their form makes them the ideal spatula for icing a cake or leveling out the brownie batter in a sheet pan. You get a cleaner, smoother look and more even spread on the surface with an offset tool than you would with most other similar utensils. And chances are, if you're a baker, you've already got an offset spatula (or several) in your apron pocket.

But these spatulas are also useful when cooking many other dishes, not just when prepping or finishing baked goods and pastries. Why not whip out an offset to flip smaller pieces of meat in a frying pan? The small size is especially helpful when cooking and flipping sliced vegetables (like coins of zucchini that you want browned perfectly on each side), and other smaller items like when searing tofu or halloumi cheese in a frying pan. Use it to spread marinara on your pizza dough, too. They're even useful for the simple task of spreading soft butter in a perfect swirl.

Read the original article on Tasting Table.