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 They were originally made of ceramics but have also been made of glass or porcelain, commonly in a round shape with an angled exterior ridged surface.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.


Monday, March 22, 2010

Terra Ceramics (Terrama)


Bernhard Fiegel
Terra Ceramics / Terama
Incided TC to base
Teardrop shape bowl and handle
Production Date
5 3/8”
1 ½”
Length (with handle)
6 ½”
7 ½ 0z
11.44 fl oz

Bernhard Fiegel was born in Germany on the 1st January 1919. He arrived in Darwin by air, 8th November 1939 as a stateless person. Moving to Paddington, Sydney, where he enlisted for service in Australia during World War 2. Teaching pottery at Ingleburn” in the Australian Convalescent Depot he worked with Guy Boyd, after Boyd had worked as a cartographer with John Perceval. Feigel was a Dutch-trained potter and Jewish immigrant whose family had fled Germany at the beginning of WW2. In 1946, following his discharge, he set up a ceramics business in Ashfield, Sydney, later moving to Greenacre. He produced a variety of ceramic wares using the brands “Terama” and Terra Ceramics”. He continued production until the early 1980s. These teardrop shape ramekins are an example of the elegant simplicity of his later work.
In 1981 Bernhard died, but twelve months earlier he had started negotiations with Trugrit Manufacturing Ltd to have his product made in NZ under licence. A new company "Terra Ceramics NZ" was formed using the same raw materials and clay body. They then shipped all of their moulds and other machinery over to Aukland in containers. This new company was run by Mr Ernie Copper, a qualified Ceramist. The new company was located at 18 Copsey Place ,Rosebank Rd, Avondale, Auckland. H.Hemara, now the elder statesman of New Zealand pottery was working there when the crates containing the moulds were opened in New Zealand. Moulds for Terra were later produced at the Henderson pottery. Initially, the company used the same stickers but later changed them to read Terra Ceramics, New Zealand. Hemara is still making pottery along with his son Paul. So is Terra Ceramics New Zealand.