Ramekin is thought to come from a Dutch word for "toast" or the German for "little cream."




Ramequin, Ramekin dish.


(ramə kin)[RAM-ih-kihn]ræməkin


English Noun




A type of dish




French Ramequin from Low German ramken, diminutive of cream, circa 1706. middle Dutch rammeken (cheese dish) dialect variant of rom (cream), similar to old English ream and German rahm. Ancient French cookbooks refer to ramekins as being garnished fried bread.


1. A food mixture, (casserole) specifically a preparation of cheese, especially with breadcrumbs and/or eggs or unsweetened pastry baked on a mould or shell.

2. With a typical volume of 50-250 ml (2-8 oz), it is a small fireproof glass or earthenware individual dish similar in size and shape to a cup, or mould used for cooking or baking and serving sweet or savoury foods.

3. Formerly the name given to toasted cheese; now tarts filled with cream cheese.

4. A young child usually between the ages of 3 months and 11 years exhibiting a compulsion to force or "ram" their head into various objects and structures.

These days, a ramekin is generally regarded as a small single serve heatproof serving bowl used in the preparation or serving of various food dishes, designed to be put into hot ovens and to withstand high temperatures. They were originally made of ceramics but have also been made of glass or porcelain, commonly in a round shape with an angled exterior ridged surface. Ramekins have more lately been standardized to a size with a typical volume of 50-250 ml (2-8 ounce) and are now used for serving a variety of sweet and savoury foods, both entrée and desert.

They are also an attractive addition to the table for serving nuts,dips and other snacks. Because they are designed to hold a serving for just one person, they are usually sold in sets of four, six, or eight. Ramekins now are solid white, round, with a fluted texture covering the outside, and a small lip. Please bear in mind that whatever you ask for them on Internet auction sites, someone is still getting the same thing in an op shop for peanuts.

However, there are hundreds of decorative ramekins that came in a variety of shapes and sizes. They came in countless colours and finishes and many were made by our leading artists and ceramicists. My collection has ramekins with One handle only, fixed to the body at one point only. If it has no handle, it is a bowl. If it has two, it is a casserole dish. But the glory day of the Australian Studio Art ramekin is well and truly over. See some here, ask questions or leave answers.

P.S. Remember, just as real men don't eat quiche, real ramekins don't have lids or two handles. Also remember, two handles makes it a casserole dish. Also, please note If it aint got a handle, it's just a bowl.

P.P.S. To all you cretins who advertise your ramekins by associating them with "Eames" or "Eames Era". Get your hand off it, you are not kidding anyone. The Eames people have told me that they never made ramekins.

P.P.P.s To all the illiterates out there in cyberspace, just as there is no "I" in team, there is no "G" in Ramekin. I am the Rameking, they are ramekins.

If you have a set of Grandma's ramekins at the back of a kitchen cupboard, have a look through the site, maybe you will identify them. Thank-you for looking.

There are many of you out there that have knowledge of Australian pottery. Please let me know if you have anything that I can add to the notes. It is important to get the information recorded. You probably know something that nobody else does.

Please note that while your comments are most welcome, any that contain a link to another site will no longer be published.


Friday, October 23, 2009

Jan Gluch

Frank Rock
Jan Gluch
“Jan Gluch” incised to base
Fish Shaped earthenware. Clear glaze over brown highlights brushed on head and tail. Harlequin glaze to interior with 5mm over top edge. Good condition for age. One with chip to tail.
B3 Incised to base
Production Date
130mm 5.3/8”
37mm 1.1/2”
Length (with handle)
176mm 6.7/8”
250gm 9.0oz
Adelaide, South Australia,
October 2009

Jan Gluck was born in Denmark on the 19th of December 1919 to Polish parents.  He was part of the great post war migration, coming to Sydney, Australia in January 1957.  He arrived with wife Erna, born 12th February 1919, son Ivan born 17th December 1943 and daughter Bente born 18th February 1945.  They arrived in Sydney on that famous migrant ship the “Castel Felice”.  Jan had been a well-known potter in Denmark, having worked at the Royal Copenhagen Porcelain works. 

He worked at Pates Pottery at 61 Lakemba Road Belmore while living at the nearby migrant hostel at Villawood.  The original “Frank Rock” moulds for these fish ramekins were still at the Easton Pottery in Willoughby, Sydney, when Jan began renting it in 1958.  Henrietta Easton had stopped working there in 1957. 

Jan produced these ramekins with almost identical glazing to Frank, except for the hole in the tail.  He also did some work for Irene Kalmar during this time.  European migrants to both Sydney and Melbourne brought skills with them that enhanced the Australian art pottery scene.  Jan also had potteries at Brookvale and later Blaxland.  He also demonstrated pottery making in the early days of television in Australia.

Jan, having trained in Denmark was one of these talented artists from Europe who were employed by local manufacturers.  Some then went on to form their own potteries such as Kalmar Pottery (Australian Art Ceramic Products).  In 1960, Jan started his pottery school at Brookvale, another Sydney suburb.  It closed in 1967.  He died in Sydney at the age of 50 in 1969.  Son Ivan began in the plastics industry but later also became a talented and highly qualified potter who went on to re-establish his fathers’ pottery in 1973 at Blaxland in New South Wales.

Photographs copyright Commonwealth Government.

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