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 They were originally made of ceramics but have also been made of glass or porcelain, commonly in a round shape with an angled exterior ridged surface.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


Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Southern Aurora Pty Ltd


Southern Aurora Pty Ltd

Plain bowl with footring.
Good, some have small chips to rim.

Production Date
Length (with handle)
Waverley Antiques 28 Dec 2011
Rameking Reference Number
SAU 001-21

Southern Aurora Pottery Pty Ltd operated from the late 1960s at 329 Warrigal Road Burwood Victoria, the same location as Lane, and now an antiques auction house.  By 1974, Lane was gone but Southern Aurora was still operating.  The potters got their clay from the now abandoned Burwood Brickworks quarry, bordered by Burwood Highway, Middleborough and Eley roads, Melbourne, Victoria.  Southern Aurora Pty Ltd were then found in the outer suburb of Bayswater, Victoria from 1975 to 1977, I don’t know if it was the same company though.  Strangely, the company registration appears not to be recorded in the Victorian Government Gazette.

Lane, Kemp, Willis Potteries Pty Ltd were first established at 109 Highbury Road Burwood Victoria in 1936 and produced a variety of pottery until the late 1960s.   Their old building is long gone.  After over 25 years in Highbury Road, they moved up the road and around the corner in 1962 to 329 Warrigal Road Burwood.  This building was originally built as a bakery in 1928 and operated as a bakery until 1960.  The ramekins that Southern Aurora produced appear to have been of one pattern, but with varying decoration.  Most have a plain cream exterior and harlequin interior. Some have a mottled green high gloss glaze sprayed to the interior. The external glaze is matt.

All of the ramekins I have seen from Lane have had paper stickers attached to the base of the interior of the bowl . These have no sticker or marking. nor are there any cracks, chips or crazing, but a label inside the box identifies them. These are a late 1960s-early 1970s ramekin set.  They have a mid green glaze with brown and olive mottling and a finish called “Green Pewter” in this range of ramekins.

The name Southern Aurora comes from our equivalent of the Northern Lights.  Auroras are the result of emissions of photons in the Earth's upper atmosphere.   It was a popular name in its day, having both a train and an aircraft named after it.


  1. I have a set of 6 the same as the set of 4 pictured above (still in box) Out of interest are these worth anything???

    1. I picked up these for $5.00 from an antique market. That was cheaper than op-shop prices. Any item is worth what someone is prepared to pay. These things were made in the tens of thousands so don't expect them to be worth much.

    2. I picked up these for $5.00 from an antique market. That was cheaper than op-shop prices. Any item is worth what someone is prepared to pay. These things were made in the tens of thousands so don't expect them to be worth much.