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[Photograph: Spoonsisters.com]

I first encountered odd-sized measuring spoons on New Year's Eve, as my boyfriend's mom and I put together the main course in what would be one of the most elaborate home-cooked meals I've ever laid eyes on (I'll have you know that basket-woven fish was involved). I needed a teaspoon and a half of Armagnac, and fast, but my half and full teaspoons were busy with other things. That's when I spotted my saving grace in the drying rack, freshly used and rinsed: a 1 1/2 teaspoon.

I'll clarify one or two things right off the bat. First, my boyfriend's family has a gadgets closet that far outdoes even mine, and second, I'd never imagined need for odd-sized measuring spoons before 2010. But now that they've been introduced into my life, I'm not so sure I'd go back, and my boyfriend's family would be quick to agree.

Here's the funny thing: the set they own dates back almost as many years as I do, and that's not entirely without reason. Odd-sized measuring spoons are, well, an odd thing to find in most kitchen stores, and just as easy to overlook. As I continued to think about them weeks later, I turned to the Spoon Sisters—if they didn't have a nice set, who would?—but subsequent searches led me to a few other similar options, all in the same sizes. Who would think that odd-sized measuring spoons would be standardized? And why, then, not add them to standard sets?

All in all, the spoons ($13.50) come in a set of five: a pinch, 1/8 teaspoon, 2/3 teaspoon, 1 1/2 teaspoon, and 2 teaspoons. Of those, I already owned the 1/8 from my regular set, but have found the rest to be quite useful. For one, I'm no longer wondering whether my pinch is the same as someone else's. And so many recipes call for 1 1/2 teaspoon of something or another that I've found it's nice not to have to make two separate trips with two separate spoons. Necessary? No. Convenient? You bet.

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