A wooden spoon keeps a pot from boiling over?
I vaguely remember hearing that somewhere, and just got a chance to test it out. I was boiling a big pot of taters for a double batch of mashed potatoes when it got a little out of control.
The water was madly rising to the top, so I moved the pot off of the burner and laid a wooden spoon across the top. I moved it back to the burner right away and it did not boil over or even come close to the spoon.
I tried it again the next day while cooking noodles in a small saucepan. I laid the spoon across the top from the get-go before it came to a boil and again it did not come close to the spoon. Success!
I researched why it works, and I found big horrible words like “surfactants” and “lipids.”
In my amateur layman’s terms, the temperature of the wooden spoon is a lot cooler than the water. The boiling bubbles are made up of steam and the cooler temperature of the spoon bursts the bubbles and gives them a smackdown and makes them behave. Metal spoons don’t work because they conduct heat a lot faster.
My husband speaks a bit of “scientist” so I asked him to help translate. He said:
“Hey! How exactly is a rainbow made? How exactly does a sun set? How exactly does a posi-trac rear-end on a Plymouth work? It just does!”
He’s a Joe Dirt fan.
All I know is no more scrubbing boiled-over messes from my range top! Amen.