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




Name

Ramekin

Variant

Ramequin, Ramekin dish.

Pronounced

(ramə kin)[RAM-ih-kihn]ræməkin

Function

English Noun

Plural

Ramekins

Hypernym

A type of dish

Purpose

Cooking

Etymology

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.


Meaning

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 They were originally made of ceramics but have also been made of glass or porcelain, commonly in a round shape with an angled exterior ridged surface.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

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Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Fris (N.V. Keramik Industrie Fris) Edam





Designer        
Willem Hendrik DeVries
Maker
NV Ceramic Industry Fresh
Marks
Stamped “Made in Holland Fris Edam” to base
Material
Porcelain
Description
Press moulded straight-sided bowl angling outwards to top.  Bottom half with vertical fluting. Short curved handle angled upwards from fixing at center of bowl. Grey gloss glazed interior with single varied colour to exterior.
Condition
Very good for age, slight chip to footring of one bowl with slight discolouring to interior.
Number

Production Date
Late 1960s
Width at rim
117mm
Width at Base
85mm
Depth
60mm
Length (with handle)
143mm
Weight
180gm
Volume
370ml
Acquisition
Salvo Store, Noble Park, Victoria
Rameking Reference Number
FRI 001-004






Designer        
Willem Hendrik DeVries
Maker
NV Ceramic Industry Fresh
Marks
Stamped “Made in Holland Fris Edam” to base
Material
Porcelain
Description
Press moulded straight-sided bowl angling outwards to top.  Short flat curved handle angled upwards from fixing at center of bowl. Off-white gloss glazed interior with single varied matt colour to exterior.
Condition
Very good for age, slight discolouring to interior.
Number
No number
Production Date
Late 1960s
Width at rim
110mm
Width at Base
65mm
Depth
55mm
Length (with handle)
152mm
Weight
195gm
Volume
375ml
Acquisition
Salvo Store, Noble Park, Victoria
Rameking Reference Number
FRI 005-011

At the height of the Second World War, Gerrit Fris and his son, also named Gerrit began the “NV Art Pottery” Like many others before and since with no experience in ceramics, they bought in the talent.   They hired Willem Hendrik De Vries as their “Aesthetic Consultant”.   He remained with them until 1967.  From 1938 to 1968 he was teaching ceramics at the Institute of Applied Art in Amsterdam and joined NV Ceramic Industry in 1943, then located in Gouda.


They moved from Gouda to Edam in 1947 because of the post-war labour shortage in Gouda to premises formerly occupied by the staff canteen of the Fokker aircraft factory in Holland.  With the help of government grants and a pool of unemployed fishermen caused by the damming of the Zuider Zee, they opened a new works there on the 3rd of January 1947.  In 1951, demand exceeded supply.

From 1946 to 1969 Willem de Vries held the post of Director in design, which from 1947 was located in Edam, and with his talent, the pottery soon became a leading maker.  Other designers were Nel Bruynzeel, Dick Gerrits, Hannie Terpstra, Emile Truyen, Jan Lucassen and Floris Meydam as his deputy.  They made dinnerware and vases inspired by the Bauhaus with an emphasis on utility, quality and design; colour was important.  De Vries continued teaching during his time with Fris.

These ramekins are typical of his design influence and although missing the underplates, they hark back to the tea sets that were their first products in 1947.   The NV Ceramic Industry Fresh existed from 1947 to 1969.  Part of their design philosophy was that decoration was impractical and detracted from the design, diverting attention from the form.  They are a form of “Missing Link” with fluting making an appearance before the disappearance of the handle.

Pride of place had traditionally been the china cabinet.  Rows of plates, bowls and jugs stood proudly on shelves in dressers in most Dutch homes.  This trend tapered off as tastes changed in the sixties and as a result, ceramics production and sales in The Netherlands fell to only a fraction of that of the industry at its height.  If you see their dishes displayed at home then it is understandable that the utilitarian lack of decoration of Fris is not an asset.

Their stylish and balanced pottery is little known outside the Netherlands but is now collectable and some of their work is expensive.  By 1969, the company was bankrupt and was taken over by the Triangle Pottery.  Triangle changed its name in 1970 to “The Pottery House” and moved production to Lelystadt in 1988 where it continues as “New Land Pottery.”

 

2 comments:

  1. Studio Fris is a favorite of mine. Thanks for this great article on de Vries!

    ReplyDelete
  2. I have a set of six lovely cups and saucers in this style. Sadly I have broken the rust coloured cup. Anyone out there with one to sell?......Regards Valerie

    ReplyDelete