Professional chefs and pastry makers alike eschew tablespoons and measuring cups for the more accurate measurement of weight in their recipes. When whipping up complex dishes such as a soufflé or phyllo dough, every ounce counts, and a heaping teaspoon could make all the difference. Our counterweight scale, which has been manufactured in England since 1862, is more accurate and sensitive than spring models or digital devices. Place the weights (1 pound, 8-ounce and 4-ounce in the circular cast iron; 2-ounce, 1-ounce, ½ ounce and ¼ ounce in the circular brass) on the opposing side of the scale. The weight is determined when both sides are completely level. This kitchen scale continues to be made with the same methods used by English craftsmen in the late 19th-century. Called “The Queen,” the model was first designed to celebrate the promising reign of Queen Victoria, who went on to oversee industrial expansion and the growth of an empire. Although a must-have for professional chefs and detail-oriented home cooks, these scales are perhaps too finicky for those who take a looser approach to cooking (and don’t mind trial-and-error baking).
Use on a level surface for best results and to achieve precise quantities for even the most persnickety soufflé. The scale is also helpful for accurately halving or multiplying ingredients in a recipe. Place your ingredients on the stainless steel tray and the counterweights on the other side. When the two sides perfectly balance, the weight is determined. Ingredients can weigh from ¼ ounces (5 grams) up to 32 ounces (2 lbs). Hand wash the stainless steel pan or put it in the dishwasher. To clean the scale and weights, wipe down with a damp cloth.
The “Queen” is a Roberval balance, a weighing scale presented to the French Academy of Sciences by French mathematician Gilles Personne de Roberval in 1669. Two identical horizontal beams are attached directly above the other onto a vertical column, which is secured to a stable base. The weight is determined when items and counterweights are placed on opposing sides and the beams are completely level. In 1862, a blacksmith from the Midlands, England – a region with a history of metal forging – began a family firm that created metal goods for medical, industrial and domestic purposes. Today, the company is still run by the great-grandson of the man who started it all.
Stainless steel pan gives exact measurements down to the ¼ ounce. Lightweight cast aluminum base with powder coating. Comes with cast iron and brass balance weights. Also available in Black. Made in England since 1862.
10.5 inches long x 4.5 inches high x 3.5 inches wide
(26.5 cm long x 11.5 cm high x 9 cm wide)
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